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When waters rise, these flood-proof homes go right with them

It’s really no secret at this point: The oceans are rising at an unprecedented rate. A recent scientific study published in Nature nearly doubled previous predictions for sea-level rise by 2500, and many experts now believe the oceans will rise by nearly six feet by the end of this century alone.

Gallery: Ten unreal houseboats that will set your imagination adrift

That said, many cities are preparing for the inevitable. New York City is funding a $100-million flood protection plan after the devastation of Hurricane Sandy. Countries like the Netherlands have built dams and dykes to withstand a 1-in-10,000 year storm, but even these bulwarks can only hold back the oceans for so long. Nearly 200 million people worldwide live in high-risk coastal flooding zones, and in the United States, more than 36 million people currently face the threat of flooding. As most recently illustrated by Hurricane Katrina, a sudden swell of the ocean can be unbelievably catastrophic.

Will flood-proof homes be the last line of defense? These innovative, buoyant homes look to withstand the tribulations of a coming turbulent and unpredictable future. Vietnamese firm H&P Architects recently completed the Blooming Bamboo Home, which is raised on stilts to deal with severe weather and floodwaters up to five feet high.

The pre-fabricated, flood-proof Float Home, designed by Morphosis Architects, is an attempt to make a home built to withstand the next Katrina-scale event. In the event of a flood, the house’s foundation acts as a raft, rising along with the water level. Features like a rainwater catcher and solar panels make the house self-sustaining when the home — and the entire city — is off the grid.

As cities scramble to come up with flood plans, perhaps we’ll see more of these floating home designs in flood-prone areas.