Rebuild Joplin Strong Workshop to Feature Monolithic Domes

The tornado-resistance of Monolithic Dome structures will be one of the featured topics at the Rebuild Joplin Strong workshop scheduled for July 8 and 9 on the campus of Missouri Southern State University. David B. South, president of the Monolithic Dome Institute, is slated to speak at the event, which is designed to bring survivors, planners, and builders together with experts in storm-resistant, green construction practices. 

 “These are the people who know how to recover from a disaster like ours and can help make the city more storm-resistant and environmentally sustainable in the future,” said Missouri State Rep. Bill White, R-Joplin, in announcing the workshop. Monolithic Domes are steel-reinforced, concrete structures that meet the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s standards for near-absolute protection from tornadoes and hurricanes. They are used as homes, schools, churches and commercial facilities.

The workshop was organized in response to the EF-5 tornado that struck Joplin on May 22, killing 158 people. It was one of the nation’s single deadliest tornadoes.

The disaster recovery that occurred in Greensburg, Kansas, will be the focus of the workshop’s first session planned for Friday. A powerful tornado destroyed 95 percent of the town in 2007, but the community has since become a model of sustainable rebuilding.

On Saturday, organizers have planned three focus sessions aimed at coupling immediate concerns about safety with long-term economic benefits associated with well-built structures.

“We are always saddened when we see the loss of life and property that often occurs during severe storms like the one that hit Joplin,” said South, who along with his brothers invented and patented the process for building Monolithic Domes. “But events like this workshop make us hopeful that lives can be saved in the future through the construction of safer, better structures that are also energy efficient and green.”

Read more about the conference in the Joplin Globe.