Ikea’s solar-powered, flat pack home can be deployed in neighborhoods, disaster zones or deserts. Has the Swedish retailer made a major breakthrough in affordable housing?
Ikea, through its non-profit Ikea Foundation, has developed a tiny prefab home called the Better Shelter in collaboration with the UN Refugee Agency.
The concept was intended to provide easily deployable emergency housing.
Since 2015, over 16,000 Better Shelters have been used by disaster victims and refugees in places like Iraq, Nepal and Serbia. Now that these tiny shelters have durably served families in extreme environments, housing advocates are exploring whether the Swedish retailer has uncovered a breakthrough for affordable housing in struggling neighborhoods throughout the US.
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