Localization: New Orleans, London, Rome
Year: 2013
Project Team: Francesco Colarossi (Team manager), Luisa Saracino, Rosa Maria Faralli, Paolo Colarossi

E-VOLO Competition: Selected Project

KAPLASKY is the new proposal for a skyscraper unconventional thought to be located in an emergency environment, after a catastrophe, like a overflow of a river or a flood.

The difficulties of dealing with these phenomena, increasingly widespread during the recent years due to the concentration of the rainfalls, prompted us to search for a housing solution that takes in consideration the speed of execution and the less use of the land.

For these reasons, the choice of the base element has been oriented on the container, chosen for ease of finding it and being transported in case of emergency, and for ease of assembling due to its modularity. The term Kaplasky has been thought in relation to different possibilities of aggregation of a container, which are similar to the logic of the game Kapla to obtain different shapes depending on the direction and the rotations chosen. In fact, a simple element like a container is enriched by its aesthetics and uniqueness in the aggregation of the parties. In the boards, three assembling options are shown: the most rational one proposes a rectangular plan with courtyard; the second one is characterized by a vertical development following the geometry of a spiral; the third one is like an hybrid among the previous introducing a courtyard inside a double-spiral.

In all the three cases, the different structure of the container is embedded in a steel outer structure that provides stability and creates a filter for sunlight and wind. The skyscraper thus obtained could be considered as a vertical field of emergency which houses a community of people, united by a strong experience, who have to organize in a short time common areas while maintaining the private dimension. The project is designed to accommodate private housing spaces and communal spaces where set up small libraries, play areas for children, space for meetings and gatherings. The meeting places, that are usually arranged horizontally, here are placed vertically and are accessible through the central block stairs and the lift. In an urban emergency like a flood, the horizontal connections decay due to the influx of water and the masses of mud blocking the streets, a system of vertical communication, and human life recreates an urban habitat would otherwise be impossible get inside a classic field of emergency. Kaplasky permits not to leave the town center hit by the flood and avoid many psychological problems caused by the removal of victims forced from their living places for the return to a normal situation. Moreover, it allows the continuation of life through a structure, which, at the end of the emergency, will remain inserted in the urban environment and reused as a housing tower for special accommodations (students, researchers) or social housing (homeless, immigrants). The skyscraper is fully equipped with the appropriate technology to handle both the emergency and the needs of everyday life.