Molly and I built a hand washing station and I put together a shower Factor e Farm. This post is an analysis of the sanitation issues rooted in geography, infrastructure, and human use following Christopher Alexander’s guidelines for design analysis.
All of Factor E Farm’s housing, work, and animal facilities have been constructed in the site’s flood plain among major runoff channels. The building zone was chosen for quick delivery and easy access by car rather than drainage. Development has continued under assumptions that the site is only temporary and that a whole new Solar Village will be built to replace the original site. This assumption depends on the tools and techniques under development.
Let’s look at the site:
At Factor e Farm, people, machines, and runoff share the same paths. There is a period of about 3 weeks in the spring and about 3 weeks in the fall when the walkways turn into mud. Factor e spreads straw on these paths to make them more easily walkable. The mud paths arise because the site is under construction.
The toilet contains a bucket for both urine and feces that is regularly emptied into a standard compost pile exposed to the elements.
The well is sited uphill of the waste runoff area. It is not dug below bedrock. Factor e did not test its own well, but a well on the same veins of water on the next-door property is safe to drink and free of agricultural runoff.
I am concerned that the conditions of Factor e’s present will get in the way of its future, and none of these dreams will be realized.