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Designed for Habitat: Collaborations with Habitat for Humanity Hardcover – July 22, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-0415891080 ISBN-10: 0415891086 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (July 22, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415891086
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415891080
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 7.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,087,607 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Designed for Habitat presents potent evidence of the link between design and dignity, particularly in the context of low-income housing. It captures a crucial trifecta of perspectives--Habitat for Humanity leaders, homeowners, and designers. Their powerful, sometimes explosive stories aren't sugarcoated by Hinson and Miller; the pair makes clear that these collaborations present huge challenges for often-opposing cultures, but can yield unprecedented payoffs. With America's housing in a perpetual state of crisis, such partnerships are more important than ever. This highly-instructive, landmark book is an unmatched guide for future collaborations. It communicates so clearly and so convincingly to Habitat and its homeowners that they too deserve good design; indeed, we all do."

John Cary, Author, The Power of Pro Bono; Founder & Editor,

"This book is a must read for anyone interested in solving US iniquities in housing because it’s not just about housing. These are stories about both America’s faith in itself and its tireless ingenuity. Hallelujah, amen and hats off to all its contributors!"

Michael Pyatok, FAIA, Principal Pyatok Architects

"Unlike most architecture books, this book goes beyond the pictures to explain how these houses were designed and built, and offers practical lessons for architects and practitioners. It should be required reading for anyone who develops or builds modest, affordable single family houses, as well as for any architect who considers this product unworthy of their talents."

Alan Mallach, The Brookings Institution, Author of A Decent Home: Planning, Building and Preserving Affordable Housing

About the Author

David Hinson is the head of the School of Architecture, Auburn University, USA 

Justin Miller is an assistant professor at the School of Architecture, Auburn University, USA

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Howard G on November 18, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a long time Habitat Chester County (PA,) Habitat Philadelphia volunteer, and full-time general contractor, I highly recommend this book because it tells us how to build decent, affordable housing that does not have to be so basic that it's ugly.

Assembling a parcel of land to build on is a complicated and slow process sometimes. For Habitat, especially in large cities, is is onerous; finding out who owns the land, what back taxes are unpaid, what city, county, or quasi-governmental agency approval is necessary further slows the building process down.

Having architects involved greatly enhances the aesthetics, and with their professional registration stamps on plans, helps move the whole thing along more smoothly.

The Phase Two Stiles St. homes, featured in Chapter 9, which I helped build, clad in low maintenance fire-proof, fiber-cement siding, show how important it is to design a house that "fits" into a 100+ year-old neighborhood. The Project 1800 homes, in Chapter 7, are getting a new neighbor; we are infilling a row house as a "missing tooth" in a otherwise continuous block of houses.

We all know that, by definition, there is no money to be made in building Habitat houses, and that architects are business people too. Architects could simply decide to design only for the wealthy.

The fact that so many firms now help Habitat shows us how generous the firms are, and more importantly, how good they are at designing houses on a "shoestring" budget that are elegant and beautiful.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Lorihog on January 5, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Overall this book is a little dry and the author goes on quite a bit about the interpersonal struggles between the architects and the Habitat folks, but love all the site plans and illustrations as well as the whole concept.
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