GOOD

New Cocoon Tree House Brings Shelter and Fun Anywhere, Anytime

Lightweight, portable, and design-oriented, the “Cocoon Tree” is like an artsy clubhouse for adults.

You can now bring your home, and all your childhood fantasies, to the beach. Image courtesy of Cocoon Tree.

Remember when you were a little kid and you begged your parents for a tree house so you could have a fun, private hideaway? There were two resulting scenarios: you had good parents and they built you one, or you had mean ones that left you forever longing for a canopy-level clubhouse of your own. For all of you in the latter camp, we have fantastic news: Cocoon Tree, a 60-kilo “spherical and versatile den” made in Vietnam, now allows you to create your very own tree house anytime, anywhere. Able to fit a mattress, mosquito screens, fans, heating devices, and romantic picnic baskets, these pod-like structures are built from sturdy aluminum and outfitted with waterproof canvas. Each pod also comes with six suspension cords that allow it to be tied up to any location with a tree or beam, from the beach to the rainforest and beyond. So, you can’t always get what you wantbut if you try, sometimes you just might get the floating spherical clubhouse of your dreams.

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GOOD Ideas for Cities: In San Francisco, City Officials and Designers Are Like Peas and Carrots

After working with GOOD to produce three events pairing local designers with city officials, a group in San Francisco is expanding the program.

As GOOD Ideas for Cities continues its international quest to encourage and tease out fascinating design solutions to urban problems, the program has established itself as a unique model that initiates viable, meaningful change. For the past three years, the team has worked with a group in San Francisco on three events dubbed GOOD Design. Now that San Francisco-based group headed by the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has taken the GOOD Ideas for Cities concept and run with it, producing their own spin on the initiative that goes beyond a single annual event.

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Architecture for Humanity's Sendai Reconstruction Plan

Architecture for Humanity just issued their plan for aiding Japan's earthquake reconstruction efforts. Here's info on how you can aid their effort.


Architecture for Humanity has been working in post-disaster reconstruction since 1999 and has designed and built hundreds of homes, schools, clinics and community facilities for those affected. They have been involved in long term reconstruction efforts in Burma, India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Pakistan, Chile, Haiti, and the United States.

Earlier today, Architecture for Humanity announced its plans to aid the rebuilding effort in Japan. AFH's Executive Director Cameron Sinclair explains:

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Haiti Quake Recovery One Year Later: Six Things You Can Do

There's no shortage of NGOs working on the island nation, but the situation there remain dire and the recovery has "barely begun" according to Oxfam.

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Over a decade ago, when humanitarian design got little media coverage and was thought by many to be the poor relation of "real design" there emerged the fearless and groundbreaking non-profit, Architecture for Humanity. Co-founded by Cameron Sinclair and Kate Stohr, who left rather more high profile jobs in New York City to run the then super tiny non-profit from an equally tiny studio apartment, AFH has grown considerably in its reach, influence, and number of projects. Today, big personalities and major design consultancies take on (or try to take on) the humanitarian projects that AFH has been involved in for years but no one does it quite like AFH. Who else can claim to have completed a project on every continent of the world for three years running?

In 2010 alone, over 81,000 people benefited directly from the work of AFH. As Sinclair explains, they weren't just inspired by it "but actually living, healing, learning or working in structures designed and constructed by our teams of building professionals." This year's 53 projects included community facility building in Chile and Kenya, post-disaster reconstruction in Haiti and Pakistan, low cost health clinics in India, and youth sports development work in Brazil, Mali, and Namibia. In previous years they've built soccer fields (like the Baguineda Football for Hope Centre shown above), skate parks, sustainable schools, mobile health clinics and model homes among other important projects.

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