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EMI Dominican Republic – Reconnaissance
EMI Dominican Republic – ReconnaissanceToday we took some time off from our regular schedule to talk a walk around the city and get a feel for what life is like in the Dominican Republic. In the morning, we walked around the local neighborhood with Pastor Elbin of CCR to witness firsthand the community's needs as he explained to us the different ways that he hopes the church can grow to strategically meet them in the near future. Meanwhile, Aaron and I (being the structural engineers that we are) took the opportunity to see and note some “interesting” construction practices (to say the least). In the afternoon, we visited local construction sites and material yards to better understand local construction practice (for multi-story buildings this time around) and also see which materials are readily available. For today's post, less words and more pictures!Pastor Elbin explaining to us the water purification system that they have (it has a sand filter, carbon filter, water softener, and reverse osmosis pump). Sounds like the stuff we have here in the United States! This system enables them to pump water from a cistern, purify it and produce a 5 gallon bottle for 10 pesos (USD $0.26!) and sell it for 15 pesos (USD $0.40) while otherwise they would have to buy it for 50 pesos (USD $1.32). That's a 70% discount!Here's are the purified water storage tanks (I think it's a 1000 gallon capacity). They hope to purchase more to increase reserve capacity since on days with high-demand they can run out of water by 3PM.Close up of tank labelWater delivery service to the local communityLocal concrete blocks (one of the most common construction material here)Typical confined masonry construction (not to be confused with infill masonry construction). However, this one’s missing the frame elements around the window…Dominican Republicans choose to store their water in large tanks on the roof to let gravity pump the water into the house. Must be some hefty Fp forces? You know you’re a structural engineer when you get excited to see a brace…And another one…Wood shoring forestBefore…AfterRumor has it that taxes are only paid for "completed" buildings in the Dominican Republic… That may explain the many many buildings with rebar still extending throughSky's the limit?Now that's a slender column!And again...Ditch in the inner city slumsCurrent DR construction. Not sure how OSHA would feel about that shoring…Two workers digging a hole in rock with pick axes!P.S. Apparently a cow found its way into the hole I dug the other day and rumor has it that it… died :(
Filed Under: Community, Degenkolb
Posted by noblestudios on September 29, 2011 11:06 AM
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