Track 2: Materials over Time: Points of Change

General Abstract

3 - Impact of American prefabricated wooden housing in the Dominican Republic (19th-20th century)

Wednesday, September 26
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Location: Hyatt-Grand EFG

The impact of the Industrial Revolution was reflected in all aspects of life including architecture, especially in prefabrication method of production in housing. In the Caribbean, it is the Americans who popularize industrialized construction, coinciding with the independence processes of some Caribbean islands, like Dominican Republic.
New materials and machinery was invented that produce industrialized elements. In addition, new construction systems based on industrialization are developed, displacing a bit of manual labor, prefabricating or pre-cutting pieces in industries and then assembling them on site.
In the first half of the nineteenth century trade relations between the United States and The Caribbean was very important, particularly the wood business with the DR, which favored the dissemination of the prefabricated systems. The main trade ports in USA was New York, Boston and Baltimore, and then New Orleans; in DR the ports were Puerto Plata, Santo Domingo, Samaná, San Pedro de Maoris, Azua and Montecristi. In all of these cities can find a lot of prefabricated wooden houses.
American firms establishing on the island and began to sell by mail all types of merchandise including houses. They sold the whole house, pieces and catalogs. When making the purchase, the order was sent by sea mail and the buyer paid the freight from factory to the place of destination. All these models of prefabricated wooden houses spread quickly because they had the facility to adapt to the climate and the different styles of fashion, adding and combining elements with a lot of freedom, totally changing the urban landscape of the Caribbean.

Learning Objectives:

Virginia Flores Sasso

Researcher / Director
School of Architecture and Design

Architecture - Cumlaude in Universidad Iberoamericana (UNIBE), Master degree of Conservation of Monuments and Cultural Heritage in Universidad Nacional Pedro Henriquez Ureña (UNPHU), PhD in Architecture at the Universidad Michoacana de San Nicolás de Hidalgo, Morelia, Mexico (UMISNH). Also has Degree in “International Development Cooperation Studies”, IEPC and Oviedo University, Spain, University Pedagogy (PUCMM) and has several training courses and capacity building in monuments conservation, materials science and pathologiesand academic field.
It contributed with dozens of papers and presentations at national and international conferences and seminars. Has lectured in various fields on related to the heritage conservation and preservation, the architecture and construction history, efficiency energy, bioclimatic architecture and materials science and pathologies.
Since 2016 is a Director of School of Architecture and Design at the Pontificia Universidad Catolica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM), where is a research professor from 2004. Has done several research projects as Principal Researcher (PR) and Co-Researcher (CR). Has several publications in books, book chapters and scientific articles.
Recognized on several occasions including: "Example for Youth and faithful Dominican National Project Promoter of the Dominican Republic." Granted in Santo Domingo, RD on 14 May 2009 by the Agents of Human Development, United Nations Development Program (UNDP), Management Committee for the Promotion of Human Development, Santo Domingo West City Council, Secretary of Education, Association for the Promotion of Human Development, Association of Industrial Enterprises. “Good practices, gestures of detachment and high sense of social responsibility by contributing to the transfer of knowledge to new generations”, awarded by the Ministry of Tourism through the Development Program for Tourism Colonial City of Santo Sunday, September 18, 2013.

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Virginia Flores Sasso

Dean Koga

Building Conservation Associates, Inc.

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Dean Koga


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3 - Impact of American prefabricated wooden housing in the Dominican Republic (19th-20th century)



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