In some emergency situations, modular furniture is the ideal solution for hosting survivors in a compassionate and respectful way. Architect Shigeru Ban’s partition based system for creating personal living spaces in less than ideal conditions is a wonderful example of ingenuity that makes a difference. These affordable cubicles were initially crafted out of heavy weight corrugated cardboard. However, the newest version features fabric panels supported by paper tubes. These are even more cost effective and can be supplied at a moment’s notice to meet any level of need.
Each “room” is readily scalable to provide living quarters based on family size. This solution creates a sense of order in situations where people must take refuge in places such as stadiums that are not equipped for this purpose. The cubes give each family a semi-private space to call their own. The partition structures don’t require any modification to the building in which they are installed. This means once they are removed, the building does not have to be restored or refurbished. Cubicles like this are just one of Ban’s great ideas. Herman Miller has more information about this architect’s other initiatives to aid earthquake victims around the world.