The Texas Grow Home is an evolution of the FEMA trailer. As such it is a temporary emergency living unit that is eventually transformed into a more traditional home. The emergency living unit provides everything that a FEMA trailer would provide – a sleeping area, bathroom, kitchen area and dining area. Once the family and the community is able to begin rebuilding, this emergency living unit would be placed on a permanent foundation and transformed into the ‘core’ of a more traditional home.
Similar to travel trailers and smaller Katrina Cottages, the emergency living unit should be between 300 and 500 sq ft. This emergency living unit, or core, becomes the permanent kitchen and bathroom. Bedrooms and living areas are then built around this core using traditional construction methods. The exterior walls and roof of the core, although acting temporarily as the envelope, are dismantled and reused as the envelope of the expansion.
Special attention should be paid to the bathroom and kitchen because they must become the permanent bathroom and kitchen of the finished home. Once the home is completed, the kitchen and bathroom must meet the accessibility requirements of Fair Housing Amendments Act. The sleeping area should provide space for two bunk beds and a full size standard bed. The living area should allow for a small dining table to seat 4. The sleeping area and living area can be transformed into other spaces once the home is completed
The core must meet or exceed the Texas State Building Code and/or the Texas Insurance Code and be equipped with electricity, air conditioning, indoor heating, running cold and hot water, a stove and oven, a large refrigerator, a power meter and ports for telephone access, cable, and Internet access.
The expansion should build around the core in a way that makes the completed home affordable, easy to build, energy efficient, visitable, aesthetically pleasing, and accepted within the community. The completed home must follow all design guidelines.
The core and the expansion must be capable of industrialized modular fabrication. As such the design should follow the design and construction restrictions set forth by modular manufacturers. The foundation should be designed to accommodate the core.
Depending on the size of the family, the completed home should be approximately 1000 sq ft for a 1 bedroom 1 bath, 1200 sq ft for a 2 bedroom 1 bath, and 1400 sq ft for a 3 bedroom 1 bath. Each expansion should be designed with 3 alternative elevations. The hard costs for construction should not exceed 70,000.