Modular Post-Disaster Housing Prototype by Garrison Architects Features Flexibility and Quick Assembly

June 25, 2014

We all remember where we were when we first saw the devastation of Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy. We all remember the residents who were forced from their homes and separated from their families and their support system. In a better world, we would never have to see such heartbreaking images again. That’s where Garrison Architects come in. Hired by American Manufactured Structures and Services (AMSS), Garrison Architects has provided a post-disaster urban housing prototype for residents displaced during a crisis.

The prototypes were developed after the City of New York spent six years researching into emergency housing. The idea was to create “shelter in place”, which would not only be less disruptive to the lives of the already devastated displaced residents, but would accelerate the rebuilding process.

Garrison Architects Urban Housing 3 © Andrew Rugge/archphoto

The key is flexibility. In the wake of a disaster – be it man-made or natural – time is of the essence. These modular prototypes are designed to be assembled quickly, with adaptable designs for that can be deployed in vacant lots or public spaces, even put in between existing homes. All this while maintaining the strictest requirements for durability and sustainability.

The prototype consists of five modules that were produced in Indiana by Mark Line Industries, and were brought to New York City where they were installed by AMSS. The possible configurations range from one to three bedrooms with a living area, bathroom, storage space, and a fully equipped kitchen. All the units are constructed using recyclable materials with zero formaldehyde. They also have cork floors and double-insulation. Floor-to-ceiling balcony entry doors provide larger windows, and integrated shading helps keep the unit cool during warmer months.

Garrison Architects Urban Housing 2 © Andrew Rugge/archphoto

AMSS Director Franklin Cox expressed his approval of the project, saying, “New York City represents the best in urban living and this opportunity will lead to faster recovery times should the need arise.”

John R. Morrison, Director of Business Development at Mark Line Industries, praises new construction methods saying, “Cutting edge construction methods such as modular fabrication offer many solutions for affordable housing in our nation’s urban areas, improving construction sector productivity, enhancing worker safety, and accelerating construction timelines which is of particular importance after a disaster such as a coastal superstorm.”

The prototype can be seen at the corner of Cadman Plaza East and Red Cross Place where it will remain for at least one year. During that time, guests will be able to live in the units for five days at a time to test out their functionality.

Images © Andrew Rugge/archphoto

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