LaHouse Opens Doors This Fall For Mid-construction Tours

Claudette Reichel, Merrill, Thomas A.

Construction on the LSU AgCenter’s Louisiana House Home and Landscape Resource Center is progressing. The “framed-up” facility will be open to the public each Friday this fall, so people can view its storm-resistant construction features before the walls are enclosed with finishing materials as construction moves toward completion.

Among the features of LaHouse are advanced engineered materials and borate-treated plywood (blue-green), as well as use of different types of wood frame building systems and hurricane connectors.

LaHouse includes a low-cost “safe room” that also doubles as a walk-in closet. Although it’s not built to the more expensive standards set by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, officials say this room could protect occupants by withstanding greater impact and higher winds than the remainder of the house.

News Release Distributed 10/13/05

The LSU AgCenter’s Louisiana House Home and Landscape Resource Center will open its doors each Friday this fall for mid-construction open houses designed to display some of its advanced construction features.

The open houses will be conducted from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. each Friday from Oct. 14 through Dec. 16. The facility, nicknamed LaHouse, also will be open before some LSU and New Orleans Saints games in Tiger Stadium.

"With the massive rebuilding need created by hurricanes Katrina and Rita, there has been so much interest in seeing the storm-resistant construction features we’re incorporating in LaHouse," said LSU AgCenter housing specialist Dr. Claudette Reichel, who is coordinating the project. "So we’ve decided to pause at this point in construction to let people see some of those features before the drywall and exterior finish materials go up."

The LaHouse project is designed to showcase solutions for Louisiana’s unique climate and conditions. The educational center will exhibit a range of ways to have greater comfort, quality, durability, property value and better health with less energy, water, waste, pollution and damage from storms, termites, mold, decay and other hazards.

"Low-cost, mainstream and high-end strategies for both new construction and home improvement are included and will be continually added to LaHouse," Reichel said.

LaHouse is an educational outreach program of the LSU AgCenter in partnership with a variety of private donors and businesses who have funded the project. It is located next to the LSU golf course on Gourrier Avenue, off Nicholson Road, in Baton Rouge.

Visit to learn more about the open houses, get more information about LaHouse, see its location, track its progress, see a photo gallery of special features, order publications or get the latest news. Or visit to learn about this project and the variety of research and educational programs conducted by the LSU AgCenter.


Contact: Claudette Reichel at (225) 578-4440 or
Writer: Tom Merrill at (225) 578-2263 or

10/14/2005 1:48:18 AM
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