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Shigeru Ban: Emergency Housing in Onagawa

A Onagawa in Miyagi Prefecture, the agency Shigeru Ban Architects has realized the operation of housing for survivors of the earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011. Rising on 3 levels, buildings are constructed from shipping containers stacked on 3 levels, a process which reduces construction time while providing excellent resistance to earthquakes.

Featuring three levels of 20, 30 and 40 m2 that can accommodate from 1 to more than 4 persons depending on the apartments, these units can be used as permanent housing.

On this project, the agency says Shigeru Ban Architects:

"Since the 3.11 earthquake, we have visited more than 50 evacuation facilities and installed over 1800 units (2mx2m) of our Paper Partition System, to ensure privacy between families. During that time, I heard the news that the town of Onagawa was having dif? culty to construct enough temporary housing due to the insuf? cient amount of ? at land. Therefore, we decided to propose three-story temporary housing made from shipping containers. By stacking these containers in a checkerboard pattern, our system creates bright, open living spaces in between the containers. The standard temporary houses issued by the government are poorly made, and there is not enough storage space. We installed built-in closets and shelves in all of our houses with the help of volunteers and with the donation fund. It will become a breakthrough and precedent to new government standards of evacuation facilities and temporary housing."

Photographies: Hiroyuki Hirai

For more information, visit the Shigeru Ban Architects.

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