Date of Submission

Spring 5-7-2024

Degree Type

Undergraduate Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Architecture



Committee Chair/First Advisor

Zamila Karimi


After the Cultural Revolution of 1959 in China which led to the occupation of Tibet, the people of Tibet suffered the loss of homes and were stripped away from their socio-cultural ethos. As displaced Tibetans, the next generations will grow up without a nation, their self-identity and live with uncertain future. To this day, thousands of Tibetans are fleeing into neighboring countries every year by crossing the treacherous (cold freezing) Himalayas mountains with great hardship, even the most experience hikers find this task challenging. Issues arise for these refugees trying to escape, and questions tend to pile up about the approach/methods for a resolution. The focus of this thesis project is to use temporary structures and kits of parts with vernacular and modular systems to create lightweight, inexpensive housing for the neediest to establish discreet, safe shelters for the refugees during their dangerous journey to the South. Using a three-layered spatial approach, my intervention builds on the concept of a triage, creating three tier Or zones. First tier will have primitive camping material in a bag that refugees can carry with ease, the idea is for them to camp for a day or two. The second tier will be few lightweight temporary structure that are more durable for the refugees to stay for 3 to 4 day. And finally, the third tier, where the refugees can form colonies of 200 to 300 people where they can stay for months before they are transported to a developed refugee settlements further South. This thesis aim to redefined refugee shelter so it can give hope and dignity not just for Tibetan but any one in hoping to find a safe passage, to a better future.