CUBO is a low cost house building proposal aimed at overcoming the growing slum population in Manila. Currently, even poorly serviced, low quality housing in Manila is out of the reach of most slum dwellers due to cost, and CUBO aims to overcome that by using cheaper materials and positioning its developments to allow residents to create communities and take advantage of economic opportunities.

CUBO is a modular housing solution that uses locally sourced and abundant bamboo to quickly construct a dignified and well sized home, within 4 hours of the installation team arriving on site. Multiple homes can be configured together in multiple arrangements to allow residents to take advantage of communal kitchens, bathrooms or offices, and foster a sense of community in the areas in which it is built.

CUBO can easily be applied in areas across SE Asia, LATAM and Africa, and based on current forecasts would be able to be rented for £0.20 per day, which means each unit would turn a profit within 5.1 years. The cost of £0.20 per day also represents a significant saving over existing alternatives available in Manila, and makes the unit affordable for even the city’s lowest paid workers.

Earl’s mentor, Will Kennedy-Cooke, Managing Director South East Asia, WT Partners said:

‘Earl’s proposal for a low cost housing solution to improve the lives of workers in the Philippines has significant potential application in all emerging markets. It is a well-considered and feasible solution, incorporating sustainable and environmental initiatives, together with improvements that have been developed into a robust business case worthy of consideration. Earl has articulated a clear vision about investing the proceeds from this challenge to realise the potential of his proposal to help address a very significant and common problem in expanding cities.’