Foto: Andreas Zimmermann Architekten AGsource: swissinfo.ch

Almost three years ago, a group of about fifty people suffering from chemical sensitivities in Switzerland joined together to create a cooperative called “MCS Health Habitations,” with the goal of building affordable non-toxic housing. The project is scheduled to be completed in 2013 and will provide fifteen apartments that run about $1,411/month for a two-bedroom apartment. The architectural firm of Andreas Zimmermann Architekten AG has designed the complex.

The completed project will cost over $6 million USD (SFr 5.8 million) and is being built in an area chosen for its low electromagnetic fields (EMFs). The predominant building material will be natural stone. An area for detoxifying will be located at the entrances of all buildings to minimize chemical infiltration into the building. This is the first project of it’s kind in Europe and SFr 1.3 million is still needed to complete construction.

Christian Schifferle, president of the building cooperative, says about the project: “It wasn’t easy. The process has lasted 20 years, during which time we have tried to explain what our life is like and how important it is to have adequate housing. It is of vital importance, not a luxury.”

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