Here are some preliminary sketches of the project. Resident Desiree Marin wanted a house that would blend in with its environment and that could be built without disturbing the mature trees on her property.  Photo 10 of 10 in An Innovative Modular Building System in Ecuador

An Innovative Modular Building System in Ecuador

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"Nobody in Ecuador had constructed a house like this before," says Barragán. But with the help of models and section drawings, the builders quickly got the hang of it. They even developed some creative new tools to do the specialized work—attaching part of a pen to an airbrush, for example, in order to extract dust from holes drilled in the foundation. They then anchored steel rods in the holes using epoxy glue and lowered the concrete blocks onto the rods, stacking each in one of the four possible configurations.