Week of August 28, 2006
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Lowe’s to Sell Expandable Katrina Cottage Kits

Coming this fall, Lowe's Companies, Inc. will begin offering plans and materials to build Katrina Cottages in Mississippi and Louisiana.

Following in the footsteps of the Sears Roebuck Modern Home, Lowe’s Companies, Inc. has finalized an agreement with designer Marianne Cusato to be the exclusive retailer of housing plans and associated building materials needed to construct Katrina Cottages. Four designs of the cottages will be initially available in Lowe’s stores throughout Mississippi and Louisiana.

Katrina Cottages, developed by Cusato and a team of architects and first introduced at the 2006 International Builders’ Show in Orlando, Fla., are designed to be hurricane-proof and meet 2003 International Residential Code requirements.

The first four plans to be offered range from 544 to 936 square feet. Some of the plans can be extended to as large as 1,200 square feet, though a limited number of additional designs for up to 1,340 square feet are in the works.

“The cottage remains the same or grows structurally with the home owner as time and funds allow,” said Larry D. Stone, senior executive vice president of merchandising and marketing at Lowe’s in an Aug. 23 press release announcing the cottage plan sales.

The materials include rot- and termite-resistant siding, durable 25-year warranted metal roofing, moisture- and mold-resistant drywall, framing, insulation, fixtures, electrical, plumbing and even appliances, according to company press materials. The cottages are designed to be stick-built onsite.

The packages will cost from $45 to $55 per square foot. Lowe’s has received inquiries from developers who want to build communities from the Katrina Cottage kits, said Chris Ahearn, the retailer’s vice president of public relations.

Plans should be available beginning this fall. For information about the original Katrina Cottage, go to www.cusatocottages.com.

For more information about NAHB’s involvement in Katrina recovery efforts, e-mail Calli Schmidt, or call her at 800-368-5242 x8132.

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