Mexico works on a sustainable housing project together with the Maya Train

Workers build sustainable homes on November 26, 2021, in the municipality of Palenque in Chiapas (Mexico). (Photo: EFE / Manuel López)

MEXICO, (December 01, 2021).- Some 400 homes made with innovative bioclimatic architecture that recycle old railroad tracks and sleepers will be delivered in 2022 to families living on the right of way in Southeast Mexico where the Maya Train is being built, officials from the Tourism Development Fund (Fonatur) of Mexico exposed to Efe.

The prototype house, with estimated durability of 100 years, was presented in the city of Palenque, Chiapas municipality, in a project by a team of architects from the Faculty of Architecture of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).

Using modern structural technologies and practices, specialists recycle, design, and test the innovative construction method that includes cultural adequacy and sustainable elements.

For the director of Urban Development of the Maya Train, Carina Arvizu, the contribution of houses is the opportunity to pay off a historical debt with hundreds of humble families who for decades lived without legal certainty at the foot of the tracks.

“Today when the train arrives they obviously have to leave their homes and they have accepted it very happy because it has been done through dialogue and this is the process we are reaching from the design,” he justified.

In the first projected phase, 350 families corresponding to sections 1 and 2 of the construction works of the Maya Train will be relocated in the states of Chiapas, Campeche, Tabasco, Yucatán and Quintana Roo.

The official said that some homes have already been delivered, others will be delivered in the following weeks, while the final total is planned for the first half of 2022.

México trabaja en proyecto de viviendas sustentables junto al Tren Maya
(Photo: EFE / Manuel López)

The National Housing Commission is in charge of the construction of the houses with an estimated cost of 750,000 pesos. (about $ 34,350).

While the National Institute of Sustainable Soil will be the one who grants them legal certainty.

The director of the Faculty of Architecture of the UNAM, Juan Ignacio del Cueto, told Efe that there are 400 houses with different types of designs that respond to different characteristics of each region where rails and sleepers of the old railway were built.

“What is available is 400,000 tons of rails and 300,000 tons of concrete sleepers. Each house carries 16 tons and they reach thousands, many,” he said.

The proposals incorporate elements of the architecture of the region, such as exterior porches and sloping roofs and guarantee that all families have adequate housing with the seven elements established by UN-Habitat: security of tenure; availability of services, materials, facilities, and infrastructure; habitability; accessibility and cultural adequacy.

Through design workshops and interviews with families, the final result considers two rooms (which allow the possibility of using beds or hammocks), a complete bathroom, kitchen, dining room, living room, exterior porch, and a parking space.

A fundamental part is a social inclusion, which is why the houses have universal design elements with accessibility so that all people can use them regardless of age or disability.

México trabaja en proyecto de viviendas sustentables junto al Tren Maya
(Photo: EFE / Manuel López)

Each house will have around 80 square meters of construction and 200 square meters of land. These prototypes are considered for the towns of Tenosique and Pénjamo, in Tabasco; and Candelaria and Escárcega, in Campeche.

In the states of Chiapas, Tabasco, and Campeche, Fonatur will build approximately 350 homes in the following months.

Of these, around 250 are built using this innovative construction system, for which two housing prototypes were designed with the aim of adapting to the needs expressed by the beneficiary families through interviews in which they explained their needs.

The Maya Train, which should be ready by the end of 2023, is a López Obrador priority project with an investment of around 200,000 million pesos (about 9.3 billion dollars) to build about 1,554 kilometers in the five states of the southeast: Chiapas, Tabasco, Campeche, Yucatán, and Quintana Roo.

At the end of October, the general director of Fonatur, Rogelio Jiménez Pons, informed the Mexican Senate that the cost of the work had grown by 60,000 million pesos (about 2,800 million dollars), reaching 200,000 million pesos (about 9,300 million dollars), due to the increase in sections of double track, their electrification and a greater number of stations.

Source: Efe



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