UNDERWATER SHELTER: Reshape the form of life under the sea
For years, humans sought to conquer the ocean in all kinds of means. People have illustrated numerous imaginations how humans might inhabit the undersea. This attracted me to start my research about an underwater space. My project is about a scenario of an underwater shelter located outside the coast of New York in around 2050.
The study is a proposal by a speculative approach created in perspective of interior design, especially supplying the life of eco-refugees. Attempting to speculate the era with more advanced underwater technology and crisis happens to all humans but possibly erase some of the world’s great coastal cities. While underwater living is a new trend of avoiding flooding, how humans adapt themselves in the world like that period of the future. Focused on suggesting a form of living scenario in an imaginary way, this paper questioned of how could people possibly live underwater within 30 years, how eco-refugees might have a temporary home to wait until flood to fade away, What does a day living underwater would be like and What impact does the underwater environment do to human activity.
My research is a study of rising sea levels, eco-refugees and how we can embrace the water. And further related into my own understanding.
Climate change reforms the habitat for humanity throughout history. Sea level rising can increase the speed of further shoreline erosion and put some low-lying land completely underwater and uninhabitable forever since. Sea level rises can influence both coastal and island regions, moreover make them become sinking cities or a country been wiped out from the map from then on. However, every human being has the right to live, but for residents on endangered land it is likely that the sea can take that away. More and more people are aware of this ecological crisis.
As every individual is a part of the global village, everyone could be impacted by it and therefore become an eco-refugees. Eco-refugees also known as environmental refugees, are people who have been affected by environmental problems and thus can no longer have a secure livelihood in their homelands. According to statistics, 150 million lives are threatened by 2050 due to this crisis. It happens to all humans but possibly erases some of the world’s great coastal cities. To face this crisis, Water Architect Koen Olthuis suggested our cities should embrace the water and have a better understanding of the ocean. Underwater living could form a protection shelter for these eco-refugees.
Result of analysis: understanding from the research
Overall, rising sea level is a worldwide crisis and it is going to affect numerous lives in the near future. As claimed by the water architect, embracing the water into our lifestyle might be the only way to tackle the problem. Everyone on this planet all has the potential of becoming an eco-refugee. There is no place to call home once a flood comes and with the countless number of eco-refugees, how to settle them all in a sudden would be an issue. Therefore, why not offer them an underwater shelter to avoid the catastrophe and stay in their local areas until the flood to retreat. With the supporting measures being taken in this underwater shelter, eco-refugees gain a secure temporary home and help for both their physical and mental care.
In the year of 2050, constant rain and floods make the residents in New York flee to underwater shelters for several months. Not until the flood retreated, they could only settle in this community before getting back to their home. People leave their city home, reach this temporary house by submarines which is just outside the shore of New York. At the coastline of the Big Apple, there will be 53 shelters and each of them will be 1.5 kilometres apart from each other and the coast. This shelter can contain around 1300 people. A unit of 6 Refugees would share their room that provides them to sleep and give them privacy of life. 6 units would become a block that shares a kitchen, common room, laundry place and bathroom. There are 9 blocks in one floor and in this underwater community, there are in total 4 floors of rooms with an extra floor of public places.
To further relate to interior design, this dissertation shows the report of underwater structures and the space arrangement. From this study, I aim to find and speculative a new way of settling down eco-refugees while they face the life-determined crisis. I argue about the life could be like when living underwater. The needs and the dilemmas I analysis from eco-refugees reshape the form of spaces. With the ocean surrounding their life, their behaviors are impacted by the new limit, including depression, lack of the exposure to the sun, the difficulties to access the outdoors and need comprehensive life support. The facilities I created fulfill the basic life for eco-refugees for up to a couple months. For instance, the pharmacy with counselling service to take care for their mental health, the artificial sun for the consuming vitamin D, a daily diving walk to stretch their legs and the fundamental supply for life. This structure can be a brief insight of how people can embrace the water and be part of the ocean colony.