Monday December 11th, 2023
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Meet The Builders of Egypt's First Recycled House

In the current consumerist world we live in, we often disregard the impact we are having on the environment. But we speak to Timur El-Hadidi, who is acutely aware of it, and is building his house out of recyclable material...

Staff Writer

As we all live, we become obsessed with buying new things. We’ve become addicted to the act of buying and a week later it’s something else but the consumer nation we’ve created for ourselves doesn’t really take into account the problems and the impact this will have later on. Our water comes in bottles, that are plastic, and that will outlive us all, becoming smarter until they create an army, that will subsequently do what Pinky and the Brain couldn’t and take over the world. It’s not a coincidence that every time you purchase a bag of chips they give you a plastic bag for your bag. 

With the concept of littering and recycling needing desperately to be brought into our consciousness, we have many insightful artists and their works in Egypt attempting to do just that, like Karim El Tobgy’s furniture line and Timur El-Hadidi’s house project, which are turning things we throw away into beautiful pieces of art. 

Timur El Hadidi and his wife Salli Khamis are building their dream house in 6th of October city out of over 60% recyclable material and with 100% regard to nature. “We bought the land in 2012 instead of buying an apartment in the city or a villa in a compound. We preferred to be free and build what we had on our mind. The land and nature lead us when we decide on design. We build around trees and between them” Timur says, adding, “In a world of consumerism, we are trying to recycle as many materials as possible. We use plastic bottles, glass bottles, concrete scraps, old books, wood, and any material we can find for building. We literally pick it up from anywhere we find it.” 

It is incredibly refreshing to see someone try to make a dent in the world around us filled with trash. It’s often a phrase we hear, that all it takes is one person to make a change, and to some degree it is true, but what I think that phrase really means is if you try and make a difference and a positive onem it will definitely become a catalyst or cause a domino effect, causing the people around you to act in the same way.

“Is it a challenge? Hell yes! We were close to giving up many times but then something drives us to continue; there is always light at the end of the tunnel,” says Timur, “We like the idea of living in a unique house that has no match around the world.” 

Timur is nowhere near done. “When we are done here, we are planning another project by the beach. We would like to help create a sustainable community somewhere on Egypt’s coastline that is in line with nature and in which people feel engaged,” hey says.

Egypt really needs more people who are willing to work on such projects and leave a beautiful print during their lifetimes. As far as legacies go, we should be remembered for taking care of ourselves and nature, and not what we’re doing now.