Date of Submission

Spring 5-7-2024

Degree Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Architecture



Committee Chair/First Advisor

Miné Hashas-Degertekin


Homelessness is a devastating experience, and its impacts are suffered by Atlanta’s families and youth who find themselves without stable housing. Family homelessness often results in the separation of families, leading to unaccompanied youth living on the streets or in uncomfortable shelters. Existing shelters do not provide family accommodations. They offer basic services and mostly lack a sense of community and personalized private spaces that are essential for fostering a sense of dignity. As emphasized in House as a Mirror of Self by Clare Cooper Marcus, humans need a ‘home’ not just a dwelling. A physical space becomes a home through the feeling of autonomy, personalization, and an emotional connection to a space, which all greatly lack in a homeless shelter. This thesis argues that it is possible to provide the vulnerable homeless family and youth populations of Atlanta with not only a comfortable and privatized space to sleep, but a sense of home, and a sense of community, while keeping families together.

Utilizing kinetic architecture, flexible pods that accommodate diverse family structures and individual needs will be implemented into existing shelters. Such a design would focus on creating a strong sense of home through flexible and operable boundaries to create autonomy and privacy for the changing needs and personalities of homeless family and youth populations, as well as a sense of community by integrating social interaction areas.

In conclusion, the proposed study aims to refine existing shelters by going beyond simply a safe place to sleep but creating a true home with flexible pods. With individual autonomy, personalization, and a sense of community, there is an opportunity to break free from the negative impacts of homelessness, offering better accommodation and a path to stability for Atlanta’s homeless families and youth.

Included in

Architecture Commons