Back in the late nineties, we ran a little theatre company in Vancouver (also Darren’s First Web Design). We needed a coffin for one of the shows (George F. Walker’s excellent “Theatre of the Film Noir”, if I recall correctly) and, in light of our shoestring budget, couldn’t afford to buy one.
A member of the creative team had a day job in a retail store, and the store had a ton of pallets in the basement. He got the excellent idea to ‘borrow’ a few of these pallets, tear them apart and build a half-decent coffin out of the wood. It worked out nicely.
I remembered this little anecdote when I read about making temporary housing out of pallets:
Pallets are great material for this application because they are sturdy, inexpensive and readily available. In most cases in a disaster relief effort many of the pallets will arrive as part of the transpiration of food and materials requiring no additional logistics to procure them. If more are needed I-Beam states that they can be built by hand at a rate of 500-600 pallets per day. One transitional shelter measuring 10Ã¢â‚¬Â² x 20Ã¢â‚¬Â² would take 80 pallets to build and cost approximately $500.
After those darn plastic chairs (put to great use by Brian Jungen), pallets feel like one of the most ubiquitous human-made objects on Earth. Plus, other forms of aid usually arrives at disaster areas on pallets, so nothing goes to waste.