The report also cites the American Psychological Association’s
brochure The Road to Resilience, which defines resilience as
“adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats,
or significant sources of stress—such as family and relationship
problems, serious health problems, or workplace and financial
stressors. It means ‘bouncing back’ from difficult experiences.”
Stress is, in fact, the major acute result of an adverse event. A
building occupant can experience extreme stress when their basic
needs aren’t met, and the resulting manifestations can include
anticipatory stress when an individual is concerned about the future,
situational stress when going through a difficult change of events,
chronic stress due to background concerns based in vulnerability,
and residual stress after an inhabitant has experienced a crisis.
In the context of resilient design, the Perkins+Will report
breaks the major stressors into five categories: housing and shelter;
civic capacity; dependent care; transportation; and food/water/
medical. In order to relieve these stressors, Perkins+Will developed design strategies to address major crisis events that could
have the most negative mental health impacts:
Green roofs provide gathering spaces, which serve as go-to locations for tenants to meet and organize during a catastrophic event.
They offer an outdoor refuge if tenants are trapped at a build-
ing due to an event like flooding. The roof’s capacity for food
production can provide fresh produce in the event of a major nat-
ural disaster and gives assurance that occupants will be able to eat
if food that relies on energy (refrigeration) perishes.
On-site renewable energy mitigates the effects of broken building
systems such as lighting, communications, or other energy-depen-dent systems. Providing renewable on-site energy helps tenants
contact loved ones if an adverse event occurs, and maintains basic
needs like visibility during a catastrophic event.
Building elements above a flood plain reduce anticipatory stress
and, obviously, minimize the risk of acute catastrophic events or
water damage in times of flooding.
Transportation for building occupants includes access to public transportation, bicycle parking, and bicycle rental, as well as
inflatable rafts. During an adverse event, affected individuals know
they can be mobile, as well as able to connect with loved ones and
obtain food or supplies.
On-site storage of emergency supplies, such as food and water,
covers the most basic necessities if disaster occurs. Generally,
stored food is non-perishable, and water can be stored in bottles
or captured as rain water with an on-site purification system.