Community category


A community laundry facility

Detailed Description:
A community laundry facility that aims to save time and effort, reduce task-related injuries, build social relationships and create income opportunities for women. Mila is more than just a space to do laundry, it’s a gathering space for the entire community.

Known drawbacks of design:
non so far (2010-09-14)


Designed in:

Status of realization:

housing, network, social, urbanism, water


This proposal includes a tool for community groups to collaboratively plan the space and a manual for running the facility. The proposed business model incorporates two tiers: micro-loans for individuals in social housing (casa definitive) to finance own and operate the lavandería in the home: and a corporate sponsorship to establish a community lavandería facility in the campamento. MiLa is more than just a space to do laundry, it’s a gathering space for the entire community.

MiLa is one of the Safe Agua project’s many outcomes. The Safe Agua project aims to develop new tools, products, systems and methods of storing, utilizing, transporting and conserving water in order to help break the cycle of poverty in “campamentos” (known as slums in Chile) and transitional housing communities built by Un Techi Para Mi Pais (UTPM).The passion for this particular project lies in the idea of community – fostering interaction and building relationships. MiLa provides a vibrant community laundry facility that offers access to washing machines to save women time and reduce injury in the washing process, and creates opportunities for women to earn income.

Laundry is the household task that requires the most effort, time and energy. Women in the campamentos spend six to twelve hours washing clothes on laundry day, and laundry day is repeated 2-3 times a week. The twenty families living in campamento San José collectively spend over 500 hours a week on laundry. Without running water, doing laundry by hand or repeatedly scooping water into often broken machines, not only takes time, but also causes task-related injuries such as swollen joints, carpal tunnel, and back problems. During winter, washing clothes outside in the cold and hanging clothes to try in the home can lead to pneumonia in both women and kids.

Other relevant information
The Mila Laundry Community Center concept is being implemented at a scale of 10 centers currently in the last stages of construction.


Is the design protected by patent or ip registration?
creative commons

How has the development of the design been financed hereunto?
Not known

Is there a plan for future investments?
Not known

Is there in-house competencies to secure market roll out of the design, with regards to investment, distribution, sales, etc.?


Designed by:
Stephanie Stalker

Environmental designer


Professional status of designer:
Student at Art Center College of Design

United States of America

City/Country of residence:

Name of company:
Designmatters, Art Center College of Design

Manufactured/Produced/Commisioned by:

Additional credits:
Campamento San José Residents