Japan’s Earthquake-Tesistant Dome Houses


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters

Nestled near a volcano in southern Japan, 450 quake-resistant dome houses put up by a health resort and decorated with flowers and dinosaurs are drawing visitors from across Asia. A dozen polystyrene foam pieces, each so light that two adults can pick it up, are glued together to make the houses. Cabins modelled after Japanese sweets and made from polystyrene foam withstood last year’s deadly earthquakes in Kumamoto prefecture.

The head of Aso Farm Land resort, Katsuyuki Kitagawa, designed the dome-shaped cabins after being inspired by his work in the Japanese sweets industry, Konishi said. One day, Kitagawa thought it would be interesting to put people inside “manju” – traditional Japanese sweets that are round and filled with red bean paste – and decided to make rooms shaped like the confection.

Interior of a quake-resistant dome house decorated with Japan’s popular “Kumamon” bear character is pictured at the Aso Farm Land resort.

“These dome rooms were completely unharmed”, Konishi told Reuters. “Not a single pane of glass broke”. Wind and earthquakes do not easily damage the dome houses because they have no beams that can be broken, Konishi said.


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters


Kim Kyung-Hoon/Reuters

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