Construction Cost Estimating


Detailed guidelines for constructing a one story building

Self-Help Construction of 1-Story Buildings belongs to the sixth in a series of publications which is created by the United States Peace Corps. These publications associate the practical field experience and technical expertise in the regions where the development workers face severe problems for obtaining effective resource materials.

This manual is designed to facilitate the experienced or non-experienced field workers with little or no construction experience to perform the following tasks :-

• Create the plan and design concerning a 1-story community building (like a school or health clinic) or home that fulfills their current and future requirements.
• evaluate the benefits or drawbacks of accessible local construction materials.
• draw and understand their own construction plans.
• Finish construction project efficiently by following their own plans.

The objective of this manual is to provide the construction method in three basic steps:

1) Initially, analyze the requirements of the people who will utilize a building and achieve a elementary design that will satisfy most of those requirements as possible; the elementary design comprises of the decisions concerning the number and size of rooms, the layout of the rooms, the major construction materials to applied, and the selection of a site for the building;

2) Secondly, develop a comprehensive, written construction plan for each part of the structure ranging from the foundation to the roof;

3) Lastly, build up the structure in real time as per the plan.

In the technical sections, sheds light on the fundamentals of construction with materials which are cost-effective, accessible in different areas of the world, and easy to work with.

In any specific location or climate, various materials (or combinations of materials) are accessible or eligible. By the construction principles provided in the manual, the field worker who performs with self-help groups will be able to prepare the particular step-by-step suggestions to whatever materials are obtainable to them.

How to apply this manual:

DISCUSSION - In various sections, this manual provides vital information that is essential to create plan for a simple construction project. By reading each section in detail sequentially, field workers will be in a position to assist community groups with technical support. The individual worker can get specific information at any time that is required throughout construction.

ILLUSTRATIONS - There are several illustrations which simplify the process for visualization. Field workers will discover that employing these illustrations with the community/family will allow these groups to understand the field workers' suggestions.

PLANNING EXERCISES - In Section 3: Basic Planning and Design, suggested exercises are provided with paper cut-outs so that a family or community group can perform jointly to design the size of each room they require, and the floor-plan (the layout of the rooms) of the building. These are suitable if the field worker is present to assist the group to analyze their requirements in detail as well as allow them to make the cut-outs.

The following topics are covered in this section :-

Basic planning and design, Detailed planning for construction, Directions for construction, Construction with bamboo, Latrines, Construction in earthquake areas, Appendices

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Detailed guidelines for constructing a one story building