Housing plans in Venezuela

Planes de viviendas en VenezuelaIn a visit to the "Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela" we where able to confirm that there is a great effort to carry out the ambitious plans of construction of housing and social buildings. Fenavip, the historic Colombian partner of the EcoSouth network is involved in various locations and as usual uses a great variety of EcoMaterials.

By Kurt Rhyner 

There are three points that always stand out in the constructions of Fenavip:

  • The social organization as a basis for a sustainable long-term development

  • Efficient and pleasant architectonic designs

  • Efficiency in the production of elements and houses

After never ending traffic jams through Caracas, good and pleasant roads took us into the center of the country, specifically to the municipalities of Tejerías and Guacara. For a Latin American visitor everything seems expensive in this country, with the exception of gasoline, that actually costs less than a bottle of drinking water...a liter of gasoline costs 4 cents of a dollar.

Hernan Laverde accompanied us during the trip, he has a long and wide experience directing EcoMaterials workshops, and is probably the man that has produced most MCR tiles since the colleagues of CECAT brought the technology to Colombia 12 years ago. There are thousands of houses covered with MCR in Colombia, and the same amount that have used the slab floor system developed by Fenavip.

In Tejerías we encountered a well-organized workshop that produces floor slab elements and MCR tiles, and just next to the workshop they are the first houses of a settlement of 22 are in construction. This is a communitarian project, a type of production cooperative with families that come from high risk areas. The houses are 79 m2 and two stories, of solid construction and well- designed. In any Central American Country this would be a very well defined as middle class houses.

The tile workshop functions with four equipments and 1400 molds. Four women produce the tiles, and after three weeks since they began, they already produce 300 tiles a day. Hernan is confident that in the next while they will get to a daily average of 350 each. Two men are occupied preparing the concrete, taking the tiles off the molds and placing them in the water tanks. To make this process easier they have developed a metallic sheet collocated under the first mold than can be driven around with a cart.


The workshop looks great: its small and functional, there are no wasted steps or energy. The tiles are of a high quality...this workshop is definitey a candidate for the best practice certificate if it can keep up this level!

In Guacara they still haven't began with the construction of houses. Here the program will be different. Fenavip introduces their wide experience in conceptualization and development of the housing cooperative, a totally sustainable plan, as "CREAR" is a well known cooperative that they manage in Colombia. In an interview we were able to strengthen an idea we had discussed in the car, that of creating a school for capacitation about EcoMaterials in Guacara, as well as to establish the quality control center of MCR and other EcoMaterials.


The city of Guacara would convert into the center of technology, with the technical support of Fenavip and the EcoSouth Network, and would offer total client service, including equipment sales. We hope to put this plan into practice shortly, as the demand for construction materials in Venezuela is huge. 





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Peter Arndt
Social worker and Mechanical technician
German, English, Spanish
Project administration and management, social organization, mechanical innovation


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