In the middle of the Panamanian jungle, an hour northeast of downtown Panama City, lush foliage surrounds a valley of 7,000 acres. The intense rainy season, which lasts nine months a year, inspires green, red and brown across the landscape.
Located along the central spine of the country by mountains and hills, the valley is home to Kalu Yala, a site can only be accessed by a narrow, two-mile dirt road. In our article today, we will know a little more about this special place that is the setting for the construction of the world’s largest sustainable city.
Kalu Yala Panama – Gogetit Highlights
* The name of Kalu Yala means “holy people” in the Kuna indigenous language.
* Kalu Yala will become the most sustainable residential community in the world.
* Jimmy Stice who is holding the entire project of building sustainable housing in Kalu Yala.
The community of Kalu Yala, which means “holy people” in the Kuna indigenous language, is composed of two entities: a development company and a training program that works closely with local people. The aim is to transcend the traditional property, bringing together people looking for inspiration, and give them part ownership of where they live.
In the city a number of best sustainable practices combine to ensure your success. There are many factors that will help build a lasting and positive style of life: green outdoor housing, eliminating the need for air conditioning. The clean, off-grid energy will power the whole settlement, use of solar battery packs for the use of electricity from the natural flow of water. A program from the farm to the table, which will decrease the need for food imports and strengthen the local economy. And collaboration with experts and the surrounding community, who are the people who have lived in Panama for their entire life.
According to an article published by Mashable website, Kalu Yala’s story actually begins 19 years ago in the suburbs of Atlanta, Georgia, when the CEO Jimmy Stice was only a 12 year old playing Sim City and dreaming the perfect place to live. As the son of a real estate executive, Stice really knew nothing about the business from his father, but he knew that the design of suburban Atlanta was not ideal.
Stice wanted to create a more dynamic and interactive place making people happier. But the selfish goal became more of a social problem at age 18, when he visited low-cost social housing in Costa Rica.
Instead of keeping track of real estate-traditional establishing himself in the industry and “make a lot of much richer rich men” – Stice finished doing their own market research in Panama, which pointed to a piece of 575 acres of land in May 2007. Perfect for urban development in terms of topography, watersheds and enabling to go off the grid completely climate, became the future site of Kalu Yala.
They began raising money in 2008, but the U.S. economic collapse Stice forced to rethink the whole project. Departed from the traditional business model of real estate by establishing equality of citizens, as investors Kalu Yala also be their owners.
The following year, Stice met several universities looking for interns. Calculating that he could learn from them as they explored their passions in design, business and sustainability, invited to work for him. The first internal promotion formed by pure enthusiasm for the project.
Kalu Yala interns are an integral part of the company, working in three locations with their corresponding disciplines office in Panama City, known as “Yala House,” for business; property in the valley of biology, agriculture and outdoor recreation; and a house in San Miguel, the nearby farming village, for the education and welfare.
What will make this city special?
The city will be out of the entire network, obtaining their energy from three sources: Solar for a micro-hydro in the daily base load (without changing the system pH, temperature or migrating species within watersheds) and tertiary generator is activated for any unusual load. The site is also located on top of a large aquifer that produces clean water naturally, and the capture and storage of rainwater is prepared for the dry season.