SAKURA is a design concept for living in coastal regions and how to face the huge desastrous impact of a tsunami for peoples life. The idea is based on accepting the power of nature and not to confront it with a larger „hight-tech seawall“. The main problem is our way of life and the limited ability to adapt to certain circumstances: If there were no settlements near the coast, a tsunami just wouldn‘t be a problem. In the same way the tsunami is little to no threat for e.g. a seagull. There must be an emergent solution for us if we recognize what the real desaster is.
The events in Japan one year ago brought up a lot of information and video footage about the disaster. The attached video (link: youtube-video1) captured by the japanese coastguard shows us two vital pieces of information:
1. The size of a tsunami wave depends on its distance to the coast.
2. A ship would intentionaly head towards the wave to minimize the risk of capsize.
So running away could be much morehazardous than looking for a safe way of confrontation.
With this information a simple design is possible. SAKURA suggest a settlement of houseboats near the coast. The houses are connected to an early warning system and are capable of navigating on the sea from their own power, at least for a short period of time (e.g. jetski-engines could be used). If an seaquake is recognized, the SAKURA-houses immediatly leave their moorings and try to bring as much distance to the coast as possible by heading towards the open sea. In this way, the can withstand both, earthquake and tsunami.
[ HOUSEBOAT ] - The SAKURA houseboat is a very compact designed place to live.
[ SAKURA-DOCK ] - Five houseboats are combined together to offer easier access. They are being held in place until a seaquake occurs.
[ SEAQUAKE ] - Docks can be combined to build larger settlements and structures. This way of organization makes it easier to recover the houseboats after the tsunami.
[ TSUNAMI ] - The early warning system detected the seaquake and gave a signal for launching the SAKURA houseboats. They are heading towards the wave.
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