Community, Housing & Identity Lab (CHIL)

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The Community, Housing & Identity Lab (CHIL) at the University of Miami, School of Architecture, is a testing ground for the physical and theoretical investigations of architecture’s social and political resiliency. CHIL understands that the built environment is manipulated by factors that extend beyond conventional construction procedures and attempts to highlight the narratives of marginalized communities.

Located on the third floor of Building 48, CHIL is directed by Assistant Professor Germane Barnes. The lab currently employs two graduate research assistants and three undergraduate production assistants. Equipped with a Formlabs Form 3 Stereolithography Resin 3D printer, DSLR video camera, two Dell work stations and conventional power tools CHIL produces work across multiple mediums.

2021 was a wonderful year for the Lab, CHIL assistants was core participants in the design of a site-specific installation for Lexus at Design Miami/ during Miami Art Week. Student designs and University of Miami resources were highlighted and received much international press. Additionally, The Brooklyn Botanical Garden solicited a custom birdhouse and CHIL assistants created a Miami Art-Deco inspired home for feathered friends. Last, in collaboration with Thrive Delray, a local non-profit in Palm-Beach County, CHIL led and participated the design and implementation of a community park with tons of new fruit and shade trees in the Historic West Settler’s District.