Gerard Steijn is the founder and director of The Mobile Factory. He achieved distinction as a communication advisor and organisation consultant. In 2002 Steijn took part in a study into sustainability in the construction industry. As a result, he became increasingly more aware of the sustainable re-use of construction debris.
He experienced the re-use of construction debris In western economies as a growing circular production process. However, in wars and disaster areas as well as in developing countries construction debris is expensive waste, which causes high ecological footprints. His confidence in a combined sustainability/economic market formula was translated into the establishment of The Mobile Factory in 2007.
After a disaster victims often live in tents for years. This system keeps them in a desperate impasse.
Transforming debris into building products on location is an optimized cradle to cradle system.
During the training and construction period unemployed workers will earn a salary from which they pay of their self build house.
During the next four years he was commissioned by Dutch- and international NGO’s, to do research on the re-use of construction debris for reconstruction purposes of slum areas and visited a.o. slums in countries like El Salvador, Kenia, Nigeria and Haiti. Meanwhile he was developing an sustainable construction system called the Q-Brixx concept, a stacking system of Lego building blocks. This system allows systematic and rapidly build homes in any shape.
The strategy of The MobileFactory is to establish a pilot project in Haiti, were after 5,5 years after the earthquake in January 2010 is still covered with 25 million tons of construction debris, the equivalent of 500.000 safe, affordable homes, while at this moment approximately 100.000 victims of the disaster are still trying to survive in 5,5 years old squishy tents.
The MobileFactory intents to share their high-tech knowledge as well as the developed low- touch technology for NGO’s and UN organizations, which core activities are the realization of safe, humane and affordable homes for homeless victims of disasters.
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