March 14, 2011
Coral Reef Housing Project
A prototype for a new architectural development may provide housing for Haitian families that were left homeless after 2010’s earthquake.
In January 2010, a 7.0 earthquake shook Haiti to the core, causing 316,000 deaths, 300,000 injuries and leaving 2,000,000 homeless. The Haitian government estimate that 250,000 residences and 30,000 buildings collapsed or were severely damaged as a result of the earthquake.
Over a year on from this devastation, Vincent Callebaut Architectures have developed a proposal for a new housing community that could offer a future of safe and sustainable living for Haitians that were left without homes.
The Coral Reef housing development aims to give Haitian families a place to create new homes for themselves at a minimal expense. Situated in the Caribbean Sea, the houses would be built upon massive earthquake-resistant concrete piers to prevent the same problems from happening again.
The main focus of the community would be to create a haven of eco-friendly living. Each house would have its own garden plot to grow food, and the village would be fully equipped with renewable energy sources that would generate electricity through wind, solar and tidal power.
These natural resources would not only provide a cheap way of living for the families, but will also reduce carbon emissions. Hydro turbines would be installed under the pier to convert kinetic energy from the water into electricity. Curved panels on rooftops would collect the suns energy and wind turbines will be planted in the grounds. Purification plant lagoons will also recycle the used water before rejecting it back into the sea.
The fluid shape of coral reef provided the inspiration for the project, as well as being one of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. The wave-like image of housing will be made by stacking box-shaped structures in a series of convex and concave curves. Perhaps the Coral Reef could provide some much needed relief for those families that are still seeking a permanent home.