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TitleCondensed Living in Emergency Situations
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                            Rochester Institute of Technology
RIT Scholar Works
	Spring 2016
Condensed Living in Emergency Situations: Creating a Sense of Comfort and Safety Through Design
	Alexandra Bush
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Rochester Institute of Technology
RIT Scholar Works

Theses Thesis/Dissertation Collections

Spring 2016

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Page 2

CONDENSED LIVING IN
EMERGENCY SITUATIONS
CREATING A SENSE OF COMFORT AND SAFETY THROUGH DESIGN

by

Alexandra Bush, CDT

A Thesis Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of
Master of Architecture

Department of Architecture
Golisano Institute for Sustainability

Rochester Institute of Technology
Rochester, NY

Spring 2016

Page 44

CONDENSED LIVING IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS
Alexandra Bush, CDT

DESIGN DEVELOPMENT

36

INTERIOR

The interior of the “Unit” is unique compared

to existing transportable disaster relief shelters.

The goal is to provide a comfortable and familiar

environment in which families can recover.

Stemming from traditional residential elements,

the interior turns into a home by using familiar

fixtures. The interior design of the “Unit”

reflects the inspiration that came from interior

layouts and design of boats.

The interior is composed of multiple fixture

components which are built into the “Unit” to

prevent theft and to make the transition to the

reuse phase easier. The components correlate

to each function: kitchenette, dinette, lounging,

sleeping, and storage. Another benefit to

breaking the interior of the “Unit” into modular

components is that it accommodates combining

two “Units”, which creates the “Double Unit”.

The “Double Unit” is further explained on page

Figure 41 Preliminary Floor Plan Sketch

Page 45

CONDENSED LIVING IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS
Alexandra Bush, CDT 37

DESIGN DEVELOPMENT

43-44. The entrance to the “Unit” is a durable

sliding door to avoid the necessary clearance of a

door swing. Once through the entry, every inch

of the “Unit” has been designed to maximize

space and optimize function. The lounge area

offers a sofa adjacent to multiple shelving units

which can serve as an entertainment area or work

station. Next to the sofa is a side table which

also provides a place for the instant hot water

heater below. The counter to the kitchenette

is flanked by two angles which help move the

occupant through the space while also creating

depth perception, which is important in a tight

space. The kitchenette is fully equipped with a

below the counter refrigerator, an electric two

burner stove top, a circulation vent system above

the stove top, a sink with a drying rack above,

and various types of storage. The wall cabinets

in the kitchenette have glass doors to create

depth at eye level, while the base cabinets below

have solid doors to provide privacy for storage.

In between the kitchenette and bathroom is a

vertical closet with a bifold door.

This provides essential vertical storage for the

occupants. Across from the kitchenette and

closet is the dinette area. This is a booth set up

that also turns into a twin bed. The table top

drops down and rests on a lip below the seat

cushions. The seat cushions slide down and

meet in the middle over the table top to form

the twin bed. Below the seats are two drawers

for more storage. Above the dinette and sofa is

the raised loft. Spanning the length of the loft,

below the bunks, are storage cubbies that can be

covered for privacy by the loft railing, which can

drop down. The depth of the cubbies go half

way to the exterior wall providing space for the

recessed lights above the sofa and dinette table.

Figure 42 Interior View, Kitchenette

Page 87

CONDENSED LIVING IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS
Alexandra Bush, CDT

RESOURCES

79

REFERENCES
Blake, Eric S., Todd B. Kimberlain, Robert J. Berg, John P. Cangialosi, and John L. Beven, II.
Tropical Cyclone Report Hurricane Sandy. Rep. no. AL182012. National Hurricane Center, 12
Feb. 2013. Web.

Cobbers, Arnt, Oliver Jahn, and Peter Gössel. Prefab Houses. Köln: Taschen, 2010. Print.

“East Village (Alphabet City) Neighborhood in New York, New York (NY), 10002, 10003, 10009,
10012 Detailed Profile.” East Village (Alphabet City) Neighborhood in New York, New York (NY),
10002, 10003, 10009, 10012 Subdivision Profile. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Apr. 2015.

“Emergency Planning - Coastal Storm Plan.” OEM - Emergency Planning - Coastal Storm Plan.
New York City Office of Emergency Management. Web. 05 Apr. 2015.

Emergency Planning and Management Before and After the Storm: Shelter Management: Hearing
Before the New York City Council Comms. on General Welfare, Aging, Health, Oversight
& Investigations, and Mental Health, Developmental Disability, Alcoholism, Drug Abuse &
Disability Services. 5 Feb. 2013

FEMA. Hurricane Sandy FEMA After-Action Report. Publication. U.S. Department of Homeland
Security, 1 July 2013. Web.

Gibbs, Linda I., Deputy Mayor. NYC Hurricane Sandy After Action. Rep. N.p., May 2013. Web.

Hix, Lisa C. Interior Design Methods for Yacht Design and the Boat Building Industry. Mystic,
Ct.: Westlawn Institute of Marine Technology, 2001. Print.

Kaufmann, Michelle, and Catherine Remick. Prefab Green. Layton, UT: Gibbs Smith, 2009. Print.

Kieran, Stephen, and James Timberlake. Loblolly House: Elements of a New Architecture. New
York: Princeton Architectural, 2008. Print.

Kunz, Martin Nicholas. Best Designed Modular Houses. Ludwigsburg: Av-Ed., 2005. Print.

Le, Corbusier. The Modular; a Harmonious Measure to the Human Scale Universally Applicable
to Architecture and Mechanics,. N.p.: M.I.T., 1968. Print.

Naujok, Michael. Boat Interior Construction: A Bestselling Guide to DIY Interior Boatbuilding.
London: Adlard Coles Nautical, 2002. Print.

Page 88

CONDENSED LIVING IN EMERGENCY SITUATIONS
Alexandra Bush, CDT

RESOURCES

80

Prefab: Adaptable, Modular, Dismountable, Light, Mobile Architecture. New York: Paco Asensio,
2002. Print.

Smith, Ryan E. Prefab Architecture: A Guide to Modular Design and Construction. Hoboken, NJ:
John Wiley & Sons, 2010. Print.

Staib, Gerald, Andreas Dörrhöfer, and Markus J. Rosenthal. Components and Systems: Modular
Construction : Design, Structure, New Technologies. München: Edition Detail, Institut Für
Internationale Architektur-Dokumentation, 2008. Print.

Sullivan, Kathryn D., Ph.D., and Louis W. Uccellini. Service Assessment: Hurricane/ Post-Tropical
Cyclone Sandy, October 22-29, 2012. Rep. U.S. Department of Commerce National Oceanic and
Atmospheric Administration National Weather Service, May 2013. Web.

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