Condensed Living in Emergency Situations is a design based thesis that focuses on the amalgamation of comfort and safety through the design of a transportable disaster relief shelter. The “Unit” provides private and comfortable shelter to those displaced by a natural disaster, specifically in an urban setting. The concept for this thesis stems from the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in 2012, and the recovery and rebuilding process that then took place. Recognizing the occurrence and the positivity of community comradery, this thesis design proposes a feasible solution to creating comfortable shelters for those displaced, while eliminating the need to relocate these families from their existing neighborhood.

A combination of interior design and architectural methodologies, along with personal experiences, influenced the design of the “Unit”. Human factors and sustainability practices were included throughout the design process, and they are evident in the final design concept. Though this design concept can be implemented globally, a specific site location was chosen for the purpose of this thesis. Based in New York City following a theoretical coastal storm, this thesis design project demonstrates how the “Unit” can positively influence the lives of others who are negatively affected by a natural disaster.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Emergency housing--Design and construction; Disaster relief

Publication Date

Spring 2016

Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Architecture (M.Arch.)

Department, Program, or Center

Architecture (GIS)


Jules Chiavaroli

Advisor/Committee Member

Alex Lobos

Advisor/Committee Member

Mary Golden


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at HV554.5 .B87 2016


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