In Colima, crowdsourced housing solutions with architecture that imitates nature

Americas Now

In the state of Colima, in Mexico, about 10 percent of the residents don’t have adequate housing. Low-income families in rural areas live in homes made of plastic and cartons. But architect Fernando Rodriguez is making a difference. Using traditional materials and innovative techniques, and relying on volunteer work from members of the community, Rodriguez has been able to provide them with affordable and sustainable housing solutions.

Rodriguez was living abroad when an earthquake hit Colima in 2003, causing considerable damage. Watching the news reports, he felt compelled to return to his homeland and help in the reconstruction process. In 2006, he founded the organization “Terra y Voluntades” to gather support from local communities to apply biomimetic architectural solutions in the process of bettering the housing conditions of those hit the hardest.

“As an architect, as a professional, as a human being I’ve always tried to leave something for others,” says Rodriguez. He is this week’s Game Changer on Americas Now.