Port au Prince, Haiti, 2010 - Present SOFTHOUSEgroupLLC

Lonn Combs, AIA, Project Director / Principal

Rodney Leon, AIA, Project Manager / Principal

Mark Parsons, Senior Designer / Principal

Dragana Zoric, RA, Architect / Principal

The Haiti SOFTHOUSE is a flexible & sustainable approach to shelter that provides immediate transitional housing, community development & reconstruction solutions - to the current demands of the recovery and rebuilding efforts of Haiti. The shelter is designed to resist tropical storms and hurricane conditions, resist earthquakes, and provide a healthy, well ventilated environment. The flexibility of the structure allows for multiple unit combinations, addressing domestic space needs, institutional needs and community needs.

The design features a lightweight and easy-to-assemble structural steel frame that receives high performance fabric with excellent weather capabilities. The structure can be anchored directly into the ground using high-strength earth anchors in a variety of soil conditions. Additionally, the structure can be mounted on a prefab concrete foundation tile system that is manufactured locally from recycled concrete rubble. The structure is designed to be assembled with few people in one day or less. Given the superior environmental performance and structural stability of the design, this system can be reused in various configurations and sites as needed and the high-performance material can be recycled into smaller applications and integrated into the local economy.

The SOFTHOUSE group was conceived and initiated by a group of designers with unique complimentary expertise and a commitment to bringing high quality, sustainable design solutions to the current demands of the recovery and reconstruction efforts of Haiti. The SOFTHOUSE group is currently working in conjunction Haitian non-profits to combine creative and professional expertise with local and cultural knowledge, in addressing the intermediate needs of Haiti in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake.