Hurricane Resistant House Going Up In The Pass - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Hurricane Resistant House Going Up In The Pass

The studs are 18-guage steel panels, which are sturdier than what you'll find in most homes.

"We're building a strong house," said contractor Jason Hull.

And the walls will be covered with refined Magnesium boards, instead of ordinary drywall.

"It's waterproof, fire proof," said Hull. "Objects flying through the air, it's going to stop a lot of things."

The 1,100 square foot house going up in Pass Christian is high enough to meet FEMA codes.

"We have about 469,000 pounds of concrete between the footings and the slab," said Hull.

And it's designed to stand up to a category five hurricane.

"It's 160 miles per hour on this steel," Hull said. "Everything's steel from the roof rafters, all the way down to the wall. When it's all combined, everything's bolted together, it acts as one solid system."

Hull Construction of Gulfport and the non-profit group Home Again are building the house for a woman who lost her home to Katrina. The project started as a modular house, but soon snowballed into a hurricane-resistant model.

Brandon Kasteler is the project manager for Home Again. 

"Other people wanted to help, and all of a sudden we had 200 mile-per-hour rating raised slab foundation, which is just amazing, and steel framing. All these people came to contribute."

While the house is being built with the latest technology, what takes place inside will be just as impressive. You see, everything must be environmentally friendly, from the organic paint and carpeting, to energy efficient windows and appliances. A lot of thought, work, and heart went into the project, so another family will soon have a place to call home.

"It makes me cry," Kasteler said. "I will cry more when we actually move some people in, because it's been a long, hard struggle ever since January to try and get all this to happen."

Here's how the project works:  the homeowners contribute what they can and Home Again donates the rest.

Home Again plans to build 15 houses. The group just received additional donations to build ten more houses.

By: Trang Pham-Bui

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