ECOnnect; Open Source Emergency Shelter

Maybe because of the high speed run of our daily lives, natural disasters are so easy to forget even after a couple of years. As you may remember, the 2010 Haiti earthquake was a catastrophic magnitude 7.0 Mw earthquake, occurred at west of Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital on Tuesday, 12 January 2010. By 24 January, at least 52 aftershocks measuring 4.5 or greater had been recorded. An estimated three million people were affected by the quake. It was estimated that 300,000 had been injured and on the first anniversary of the quake, Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive mentioned that the total casualties by death was 316,000.

Even after 3 long years, a vast number of Haitians are still living tents and it is the most certain thing is that they need more housing like everyone else around the world those who faced with any kind of natural disaster. The higher costs of constructing a structure, a custom-built one for the victims of the earthquakes is obvious. But what if you could create a structure that combines the efficiency of a tent with the comfort and stability of a four-walled structure? What if this new concept is not that time consuming and expensive? Someone has some ideas…


Dutch architect Pieter Stoutjesdijk of ECOnnect’s soon to be real dream is an emergency housing shelter for Haiti. A structure that can be raised in 5 hours with interlocking pieces! Watch the video below.

100 CNC cut post disaster shelter for Haiti from ECOnnect on Vimeo.

Wouldn’t it be great if these 100 CNC cuts could solve the very first need of humanity? Stoutjesdijk estimates that the whole concept would cost less than $10,000 total to manufacture in developing countries. Is it high? Maybe, but wait… Stoutjesdijk believes in an ‘Industrial Revolution 2.0’. And in favor of it his design is digitally fabricated and open source, which allows further collaboration and possibly improvements. It will be distributed as a digital file, so everyone with an interest will be able to set the parameters of a design, which will then be produced locally and delivered on demand.


“After this first proof of concept,” says Stoutjesdijk, “ECOnnect is about to focus on large-scale housing projects in undeveloped countries.”

It is a matter of sharing and believing. As Architecture of Life, our eyes and hearts will be by their side. See you soon after the very first development of this project.
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