Emergency Houseboats: Bamboo Shelters Float on Oil Drums



bamboo houseboat

Vernacular Vietnamese in terms of their materials and general appearance, these bamboo structures normally rest on the ground but hide a useful surprise – beneath their raised floors sit a series of old oil drums that will help lift the homes in times of flooding.

bamboo houseboat disaster design

Designed by the local firmĀ H&P Architects, the intention is to address in a contextual and cost-efficient manner the perennial problem of regional flooding that plagues many parts of Southeast Asia.

bamboo houseboat diagram

Bamboo offers the structures a degree of flexibility if and when they are lifted off the ground during a disaster, while an anchor keeps them from floating away entirely. The windows and doors are also made to be walled off with relative ease in the face of a serious storm front.

bamboo houseboat construction process

Perhaps best of all, this is not a pie-in-the-sky concept that would be cost-prohibitive to deploy – its estimated price tag in terms of labor and materials is a mere $2,000, and both can also be locally sourced with regional techniques and parts.

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