Peru: Promotion of Safe, Sound and Sustainable Construction Practices in Vulnerable Urban Areas (Construya)

Accelerated urbanization, a lack of urban planning and a significant housing deficit have generated an increasing number of informal dwellings. It is estimated that 500,000 homes and more than 700,000 people in Lima live in conditions that place them at high-risk of earthquakes and tsunamis, making Peru one of the countries most likely to experience seismic events in the world. Most homes built in vulnerable zones do not comply with the most basic construction requirements.

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lima, peru
-12.0463731
-77.042754
Project duration
2019 - 2023

The project

Given this situation, the project is aimed at strengthening the demand by families and homeowners for qualified builders and reliable construction services. The project also seeks to institutionalize the supply of affordable and ongoing technical and business training for construction workers. The project connects other key actors as well, including municipalities, construction companies, and the suppliers of building materials and services.

During its first phase (2015-2018), the project identified bad construction practices that were most commonly utilized in Lima’s outlying districts. Based on these findings, evening training programs were designed for construction workers, using an adult education model (andragogy). Technical and business training was provided, with support from the nation’s most important training institutes. Simultaneously, homeowners in vulnerable areas received information about the risks of unsuitable building practices and were provided with training about how to improve their living conditions through safer and healthier housing. Impact studies indicate that the builders who received training constructed safer houses. The same workers also obtained increases in their incomes, and the aggregate value of the project’s approach began to gain recognition from local community actors.

Although improvements in the quality of training remains a key priority during the second project phase (2019-2022), the formalizing of construction practices will be approached in a more comprehensive manner. To institutionalize inclusive services—both the provision of ongoing training and the availability of technical assistance (support from professionals such as architects and structural engineers)—inclusive business models for different institutional project partners are being developed. In this way, greater sustainability of project impact can be better insured. The greatest challenge is gaining access to the immense potential of the “self-construction” market, which accounts for approximately 70% of the market volume.

Results

2019
 

  • 172 workers trained in construction practices.
  • 178 families sensitised on how to make better decisions when building their homes new or existing.


 

Financing partners

This project is financed by Hilti Foundation, among other donors. As part of the Swisscontact Development Programme, it is co-financed by SDC (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs FDFA).

News

Bolivia, Peru, El Salvador
Upskilling and reskilling, Labour market insertion
11.03.2021
Overcoming the Covid-19 crisis in Latin America – How projects have adapted to meet challenges during the pandemic
Innovative solutions are essential to meet the challenges during the Covid-19 crisis. Three examples from Latin America show how the projects Swisscontact implements have adapted to the new circumstances and demonstrated resilience in the face of the pandemic. In El Salvador, complementary carpentry training for returning migrants is being adapted to the new market conditions. Master builders in Peru are developing digital skills in order to improve safety during construction projects. In Bolivia, mechanical engineers designed and developed a respiratory assistance device for families in rural parts of the country.
Peru
Upskilling and reskilling
04.01.2021
Virtual classes for master builders – when limitations become learning opportunities
Edwin, Francisco, and Martin are three of the independent master builders who demonstrated that in order to learn you have to “roll up your sleeves” and overcome the challenges that might arise in the process.
Peru
10.07.2019
With our feet on the ground 
Sustainable construction practices in Lima, Peru