Session: Construction + Community, Winter 2023

Builders: 14 students

Materials: redwood 2×4, chop saw, drill and impact driver, deck screws, ladder

Description: Our Construction + Community cohort rang in the New Year by building a shade house for longtime client, Urban Tilth‘s garden at Verde Elementary School in Richmond! As of March 2023, the shade house is installed here at Girls Garage until we can move it on site this May. Building the shade house meant cutting lumber to size with the chop saw, building out the frame and installing diagonal bracing pieces, a “barn raising” to literally raise the walls, building out the side walls, and cutting birds mouth notches for the roof slats. By the end of the project, our students had built a functional garden structure, piece by piece. If you’re wondering what a shade house’s purpose is, think of it as “college for seedlings,” as Shop + Project Manager Augusta Sitney describes it. The shade house serves as an interim stop for seedlings between a greenhouse and the real world, with some protection from the elements using dark shade cloth, but with more exposure than a greenhouse. On a blazing Saturday in mid-May, we installed the shade house on-site.