In class this past week we discussed vernacular design in architecture. Vernacular design reacts to the environment and uses local resources that help to create functionality before aesthetics.  I am from Northern Virginia, which is a very suburban area with houses that just follow the curve around a cul-de-sac.  Vernacular design is not so prominent in the area and is substituted with a high electric bill during the hot summers and cold winters.  When designing a school in Honduras with Global Architecture Brigades, we had to use vernacular design because the area does not have electricity and relies heavily on natural resources.  When designing the roof, with the help of Professor Sherman, we went through many different roofing ideas to try and cater to the amount of high temperatures, heavy rain season and earthquakes.  The roof of the existing elementary school is made of corrugated metal that can get very loud and distracting when the heavy rain falls.  The reason they used corrugated metal is because it is a very light material and it is important not to have too much weight on top because earthquakes are very frequent in Honduras.  The design we decided upon is composed of a double-tiered roof of both corrugated metal with plywood underneath to help reduce noise from the rain.  The roof provides proper ventilation for the school through the air pockets and the corrugated metal provides a very light material.  Additionally, the walkways are covered to provide shade from the hot sun as well as a place to cover from the rain.  This project helped me learn a great amount the importance of vernacular architecture and helped prepare me for Professor Sherman’s course.

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