The dome-shaped houses in Pottuvil, which were built as a settlement for those affected by the tsunami, are proving to be a solution to the hot and dry climate in Ampara as well as promising to be tsunami resistant.
The story of this dome-shaped house village started way before the tsunami when the 280 families of Inspector Eatham were forced to leave their homes in1990 due to the war and scarcity of water. They were resettled in Komarai, where they faced the 2004 December tsunami, which forced them to leave their adopted homes in search of shelter with relatives and friends. The fear of another tsunami led them to their old village where dire conditions like scarcity of water and lack of proper housing awaited them.
These strange shaped dwelling celebrated for their versatility and the simplicity of the building process—which requires minimum skilled labor and building materials—were built following the destruction of nearly 12,000 houses by the 2004 tsunami as a solution to the challenging situation of the members of Inspector Eatham community.
The dome houses, introduced to the country by Solid House Foundation, were constructed with a reusable pneumatic framework, which was produced by BingFo in the Netherlands and was transported to the location while other materials had been purchased locally. Compressed stabilized earth blocks were introduced for additional straight walls which separate the inside compartments.
The houses include a living area, two bedrooms, a kitchen and an adjoining bathroom. A rainwater harvesting tank for each house was introduced to reduce scarcity of water.
The houses' dome shape with a central tunnel and a sky window leaves the inside of the house cool. In addition, the dome shaped house is believed to have more resistance towards future natural disasters.