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MSU project to help spin straw into sustainable housing in Kenya
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David Fortin, left, architecture professor at MSU, and Michael Spencer, a 2010 MSU architecture graduate, and the potato storage facility they designed and helped build of straw-bale construction on a far in Ex-Lewa, in Kenya's highlands. The structure was then covered with plaster. Fortin and Spencer will take a team of MSU students to the area next summer to build houses of straw bales. They believe straw-bale construction, an update of an age-old technique, has potential to be a sustainable and economical option to help solve the Kenyan housing crisis. Photo courtesy of David Fortin.
Spencer designed and helped build a teachers' residence built of straw-bale construction this winter on a farm in Ex-Lewa, in Kenya's highlands.
The residence will be painted to match other buildings in the area. Photo courtesy of Michael Spencer.
Michael Spencer and a resident of a farm in Ex-Lewa, in Kenya's highlands helped build a straw-bale potato storage building last summer. The technique, which uses straw that is usually burned or fed to animals on the farm, has the potential to be a sustainable and economical option to ease Kenya's housing crisis, Spencer and Fortin believe. They will take a team of MSU students to the area next summer to build housing out of straw-bale. Photo courtesy of David Fortin.