Honolulu has an increasing homeless population and to help them out, the city found a new way of accommodating them: old city buses. The local government took the idea from Lava Mae, a program in San Francisco that turns withdrawn buses into portable showers for the homeless. Honolulu had around 70 buses that were about to go out of service.
A group of architects formed a team and volunteered to design the bus shelters. One set of buses will be turned into hygiene units. Another set will be redesigned to have four to eight beds, which can fold away so the bus can be used for different purposes during the day.
The big advantage of using buses for shelter is the fact that buses are already built to be used by humans, instead of for example shipping containers that are used to create shelters. So for example all buses will still have working airconditioning. And although the buses cannot be used for regular transportation services, they still work and can be used to help people in different areas of the city.
Shelter buses aren’t too expensive to convert, however the hygiene buses will cost around $100,000 per bus so they’re trying to get funding to get this really cool project going.