Following the decline of the Ceausescu regime in Romania, a severe housing crisis required an urgent, cost-effective and efficient construction solution for new housing. Craiova was one of the most affected cities, where poverty and unemployment prevailed. The number of homeless children also grew alarmingly fast.


Project Essentials

  • LocationCraiova, Romania
  • ClientEthos Open Hands
  • ArchitectAllen + Maurer Architects
  • Size59,000 ft² (5,500 m²)

Initiated by the Christian aid organization, Ethos Open Hands, this project created 30 new living units for families who were willing to take in homeless children for care.


The timber-frame construction of the buildings made it possible to build a modern residential complex at low cost.

Fast + Epp was tasked with meeting stringent fire and seismic safety requirements, and opted for a structural solution that consisted of concrete shear walls that double as partition walls.