Is this the homeless shelter of the future? Architecture students create prototype

There are approximately 1,185 homeless people living in Spokane, including about 170 homeless families, most of which are suffering from the extreme consequences of poverty. Washington state University’s third-year architecture studio led by assistant professor Mona Ghandi is a Homeless Shelter Design build studio, and it aims at designing an affordable, portable, flexible, and self-stand shelter for homeless, using computational design and emergent technologies.

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By using the potentials embedded in emergent technologies and material behavior, students have fabricated a shelter that can better serve homeless people and bring them back their dignity. The benefits are not limited to the homeless population but also extend to our city and society as a result. This reconfigurable shelter is not only a safe place to live but most importantly it can function as a business incubator or pop-up shop to give a homeless person the ability to become financially independent which can lead to their recovery. Our hope would be working with the city of Spokane for continuing this idea for more years through a Pilot Program.

Students will submit their projects to the 2017 AIA Spokane Homeless Shelter Design Competition on Thursday, April 27th at 5:30 PM. One selected project fabricated in 1:1 scale will be showcased at the 3rd Annual AIA Spokane Awards Show and the Spokane Downtown Mall for 2 weeks (May 28th-April 14th). Then, by coordinating with local organizations and finding homeless volunteers, the goal is to initiate the usage of the built prototype for the summer. The long term goal would be working with the city of Spokane for continuing this idea for more years through a Pilot Program.

As posted in the INLANDER, Samantha Wohlfeil, on Wed, Apr 12, 2017 at 11:14 AM