Every year nearly 21 million pallets end up in landfills, it’s a waste that cannot continue. We have already seen here some ideas to reuse these in the house, but if they were used for something more important?

84% of refugees around the world could have a house with only a year’s supply of pallets in the United States. It is from here that the idea of ​​the humanitarian project Pallet House was born in the architectural firm American I-Beam Design.

The Pallet House was conceived as a temporary shelter for the refugees returned to Kosovo after the war: no longer the classic tent, but something lasting and that could give more the idea of ​​home.

Currently, according to the latest UN data, there are 60 million refugees and displaced people in the world living in refugee camps for in average 7 years, and someone for their entire lives.

It is clear therefore that it is essential to provide a home, even with its limitations, to all these people.

Rendering of a refugee camp in Somalia with the Pallet Houses
Rendering of a refugee camp in Somalia with the Pallet Houses

Building a Pallet House is simple and has a very low cost. For a house of about 23 square meters are used 100 recycled pallets (some of these have already come to the camps thanks to shipments of food and medicine) and the work of 4-5 people with very common tools; a house is ready in less than a week.

The pallets are an inexpensive material, easily available and highly versatile: each family can build according to their needs. The pallets adapt to almost all types of climates in the world and houses can be completed with locally available materials: tarpaulins or covers to prevent the penetration of water; soil, wood and straw to cover the outside and provide insulation.

The Pallet House is an innovative, ecological and completely practicable for all those who live the war and who have suffered natural disasters, but also to all those people in the world (about one billion) that need an affordable decent home to rebuild their lives.

Although created for different purposes, the Pallet House teaches the importance of recycling and reuse: with materials that usually we throw away we can build anything, even a house. Why not do it ourselves in our garden for our children to play in it, as the tool shed, a tree house or, why not, a little house that you can use to offer a green hospitality (with the appropriate permissions)?

It’s really simple and you just need a bit of willingness and free time. We leave you with a project’s video.


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