Miami sesigner fundraises for first sustainable, tsunami-proof houseboat

Published online: May 10, 2011 News Amanda McCorquodale -
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Forget Starbucks sales. One economic indicator that the economy is actually recovering is the number of ambitious, unreasonable, and expensive design projects popping up. Miami has a history of such lofty projects from tropical ski slops and spinning skyscrapers to the recent sovereign floating island 

The ocean must be the new frontier, because we've spied another water-craft project: the world's first sustainable, tsunami-proof houseboat. Deemed the Pearl, it's perfect for anyone simultaneously terrified and protective of Mother Nature.

The open seas living vessel is the brainchild of Miami-based industrial designer Orhan Cileli and his start-up, Rootiment Design. He is currently seeking $24,000 on the micro-funding site Indie GoGo or at least access to a large wave testing pool. 

The houseboat looks like a large fishing bobber with its spherical, gyroscopic design, which allows the vessel to literally bob through high seas without capsizing. But Cileli holds it's more luxury home than tsunami life boat. 

The top floor will be a greenhouse, which collects rainwater for irrigation, provides shade, and produces oxygen for the other three floors. The Pearl will also be lined with solar panels because when fleeing a natural disaster, the last thing you want to do is add to the carbon footprint and anger Mother Nature even further.

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