Post-Katrina Housing Goes Ikea

Following the Ikea model, home builder John Sawyer is bringing a new -- and cheaper -- process to affordable housing in New Orleans.
October 25, 2008, 1pm PDT | Nate Berg
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"Three years after hurricanes Katrina and Rita battered the Gulf Coast, housing remains a major problem in the region. There's a shortage of skilled labor to build new homes, insurance rates have skyrocketed, and most federal aid for temporary housing expired this year."

"Mr. Sawyer's response: the Everhouse, a single-family home built from concrete wall panels that are wind-, fire-, mold-, and pest-resistant. About $68 per square foot, the Everhouse is about half the cost of affordable housing in some Gulf Coast cities."

"Sawyer is a Boston-based builder who's used to working on golf-course communities and retirement homes. But when he and his partner, Harold McKenna, visited the Gulf Coast area after the storms, they started brainstorming a housing solution that could improve on the recent 'Katrina cottages.'"

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Published on Thursday, October 23, 2008 in The Christian Science Monitor
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