Stabilised Soil Block House designs in Kenya.
They require larger roof overhangs to protect the walls from rain water. They require to be slightly raised from the ground to protect the wall from ground water and moistrure. The roof design needs to be in such a way that it prevents Bernoulli effect to lift the roof upwards during strong winds.
Where quarry stones are not available, they are a good substitute eg Northern Kenya.
They need close supervision to ensure structural strength high quality.
In areas where quarry stone is available, where stone costs around kes 60 per piece, then the soil blocks will not have any advantage because it also costs nearly the same as stone to produce.
Soil blocks are advantageous in areas where quarry stone costs around kes 100 and above per piece .
Storeyed house construction.
Quarry stone has an advantage since it can be used to support a storeyed house without using concrete columns.
Soil blocks are only used as an infill material that does not carry any weight so in storeyed houses, the load bearing structure has to be built using concrete columns, beams and slabs.
Francis Gichuhi Kamau, Architect.