A multi-purpose water basin and toilet for rural households.
Easy Shelter is a multi-purpose water basin and toilet for rural households designed by iDE as part of the Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) initiative they are developing in Cambodia, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Nepal, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, and Ghana.
The iDE WASH program is currently available in seven countries: Cambodia, Bangladesh, Vietnam, Nepal, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, and Ghana
Some parts of the Easy Shelter are prefabricated in a local factory and transported to the household property for assembly and installation. This group includes concrete foundation footing, concrete columns, concrete wall panels, metal tubes roof, concrete basins, and squatting toilet. The parts executed on-site include excavation, floor installation, pipes installation, and painting.
Users can obtain the product through local sellers
Since 2011, iDE’s program in Cambodia facilitated the sale of over 275,000 Easy Shelter toilets and it was expected to add 150,000 toilets by 2018.
Indication of whether design can be replicated in multiple locations
Number of individuals. 1 family = 5 persons.
Number of days from start of construction to completion
Surface area of footprint
Number of occupiable floors (ground floor only = 1)
Primary materials used
Composite estimated R-value
As calculated by designer
As calculated by designer
Based upon primary structural system as per the International Building Code
Based upon Structural Occupancy Category and soil conditions of site; as per the International Building Code
List of suitable climates for use of this design
Easy Shelter layout includes two modules of 1.6 x 1.6 m where one of the modules corresponds to an exterior area with a 937 L water basin and the second module is the room for the toilet. The toilet includes an interior 311 L water basin and a squatting toilet. The toilet’s roof is made of metal tube structure and corrugated tin panels with a rainwater gutter. Designers calculated the amount of water collected by the rainwater gutter will be close to 5000 L per year, considering Cambodia’s annual average rainfall. This amount should be enough for filling both the exterior and interior basins.
Easy Shelter allows multiple users to utilize the toilet/shower and the exterior water basin at the same time without compromising privacy.
The producer estimated the amount of rainwater collected by the rainwater gutter could be close to 5000 L per year. The amount of water that can be collected in the exterior basin is 973 L and the interior basin 311 m. This allow the user to have uninterrupted access to “clean-looking” water.
The manufacturer states the possibility to add a new construction to the shelter without additional work.
The prefabrication allows the builder to work in a controlled environment where they can do their measurements more quickly and easily, and produce concrete components faster and more precisely. Working off-site also freed the building from personal oversight from the user. The materials used help to minimize the use of skilled production labor.
The manufacturer performed user testing, including 1:1 interviews, co-creation methods, and observation, on low-, medium-, and high-resolution prototypes to inform various design parameters. iDE also conducted a space perception test on the high-res prototypes to select a final design.
More detailed results can be found here.
No third-party organizations, only testing performed by the designer.
No known safety hazards are related to this product.
Later versions of Easy Shelter include the use of concrete blocks for the construction of the walls and the adaptation of the design to make it more accessible for people with disabilities.
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