Basalt dry stone walls
Started in 2010 by four exceptional Amdework-born Ethiopians who made career in Addis Abeba and Nairobi, Dehana-Amdework Foundation (DAF) aims to invest socially, ecologically and economically in Amdework, with a community guesthouse as a first project. A community guesthouse allows for welcoming NGO’s, officials, teachers and family from afar, where there is no one day return possibility due to distances and where population’s pride is at stake in welcoming the actors of their roadmap to development.
The guesthouse project uses dry stone techniques for retaining walls and platform walls. Locally sourced strong basalt stone is quarried 300 meter from the site, is then split, chiseled and transported to the site to be used for dry stone masonry. Amdework people use dry stone walling until 1,5 meter high for fencing only, while for retaining walls they use cement mortared walls. In this guesthouse project, local masons do dry stone walling until 4 meters height to retain the mountain, at half the price of cement mortared walls, and with more local labour.
For the wall of the rooms, an earth mortar stone masonry with lime mortar joint pointing was used. The lime mortar joint pointing ensures watertightness while at the same times allows for the building to breathe (contrary to cement) and thus, for the earth mortar to dry out when needed.
- DAF Foundation