One year ago I initiated sLAB Costa Rica, a design-build initiative at the School of Architecture and Design at the New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) that is lead by my studio, Holler Architecture. Together with a group of very dedicated NYIT architecture students I designed the much needed Nosara Recycling and Education Center. This past rainy season the project made a huge step toward reality.
Funded in part through a fundraising campaign on Kickstarter over 30 NYIT architecture students traveled to Costa Rica during July and August and volunteered on the construction site of this important community project.
During these past months, in collaboration with the Waste and Recycling Association, architect Lucca Spendlingwimmer of Salagnac Arquitectors, and many more generous volunteers in Nosara, we were able to set up the construction site, complete the site grading, concrete foundations and concrete block walls, and even built the first wooden roof truss.
However, the project is far from completed, and much work remains to be done before the building is ready to help with the local waste management problem.
Local workers continue to build the project right now, but without help from the student volunteers, the pace of construction slowed considerably. In order not to loose momentum the students have set up a second Kickstarter campaign to raise $9,000 by December 13. Funds will enable the students to return to Nosara in January to again volunteer on the construction site, and to partially fund a documentary film about the project by German filmmaker Ayana de Vos.