MIT Mass Timber Design, a cross-disciplinary design workshop at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have developed a building prototype that aims to tackle the world’s growing energy crisis, “one of the biggest challenges of the 21st century.” Extensively using the wood-based building design and construction technology mass timber - a method growing in popularity within North America - the project utilizes the “efficiency, speed, precision and versatility” of prefabricated timber construction elements to realize a multi-functional, sustainable building. The longhouse typology, often one of the first permanent structures of a civilization, is a common across the world, but in adapting its construction to face modern-day issues, the team hopes to create a space that “builds upon this rich cultural icon.”
Modular Design: The Latest Architecture and News
Carlo Ratti Associati, working in collaboration with Alphabet’s Sidewalk Labs, has unveiled their design for a modular paving system named “The Dynamic Street.” Intended to make streets “reconfigurable, safer, and more accessible to pedestrians, cyclists, and tomorrow’s self-driving vehicles,” the project will be on display at Sidewalk Lab’s office and experimentation space in Toronto throughout the summer of 2018.
Manifesting as a series of hexagonal modular pavers, the project explores the various patterns which can be created by reconfiguring modules, with a potential future “allowing a street to create an extra car lane during rush hour before then turning it into a pedestrian-only plaza in the evening.”
OOPEAA (Office for Peripheral Architecture) has won an invited competition for the design of the Allas Sea Pool Family in Helsinki, Finland. Constructed on floating platforms, and designed as a modular, flexible, adjustable system, the Allas Sea Pool Family is intended to be a new global typology for coastal sites, where building on land is not feasible.
The invited competition asked entrants to submit proposals which responded to varying environmental and seasonal conditions, with OOPEAA ultimately chosen for their “strong concept that places the floating spa in a central location in the city.”
Penda has released images of its proposed high-rise residential tower in Tel Aviv, featuring brick arches and cascading terraces influenced by the city’s Bauhaus era and the materiality of its Old Town. The 380-foot-high (116-meter-high) scheme will house a range of one to four bedroom apartments, as well as double-height penthouses.
Designed and developed by Fiction Factory, a company of creative makers from Amsterdam, Wikkelhouse loosely translates to ‘wrapped house.' This sustainable modular house is uniquely created with cardboard as its main building material and is customizable in its size and function.
Across the world, homelessness in fast-paced metropolises such as New York City is at a record high since the Great Depression of the 1930s, more than 60,000 people are in shelters every night while many others must find a place to sleep on the streets, the subway or other public spaces. The real estate industry has caused the increasing rents and a high demand for any remaining plots; many of the new builds are luxury apartments, rather than the low-cost housing that is so desperately needed. As a result, thousands of people are forced onto the streets and charities struggle to provide adequate help for everyone.
Architecture firm Penda has created "Urban Nest," a new small living concept in collaboration with BMW China's MINI LIVING group for the recent Shanghai Mini Life Exposition. The installation is constructed from a series of 3 by 3 by 3 modules housing different program elements that can be combined to create a variety of flexible living arrangements.
Seeking to connect the traditions of carpentry and the prefabrication industry, Chilean practice abarca+palma have developed a modular house proposal made up of 10 different types of module, capable of forming 5 different house layouts.
The house is constructed in pine wood—using composite beams and pillars—with prefabricated SIP panels.
The American/Turkish architecture firm Eray Carbajo has unveiled Urban Rural, a new typology of urban living set to become a benchmark for future development in Istanbul, Turkey. The vision behind Urban Rural is for a hybrid model of living, combining close proximity to urban centers with the lush landscape of rural life. Challenging the status quo of typical residential typologies, the scheme will consist of modular hexagonal units with triangular gardens, forming an active façade designed to become a future landmark for the city.
Standing on a rise overlooking the Spanish Mediterranean coast, there is an odd structure which could easily be mistaken for an vast pile of forgotten blocks. Kafka’s Castle, built in 1968, was one of the earlier projects completed by Ricardo Bofill, a Spanish Postmodern architect known for apartment buildings as monumental as they were thought-provoking. While his later work indulged in Postmodern historicism, the modular and mathematically-derived Kafka’s Castle was an unabashed break from any local or global tradition – as much the case now as it was in the 1960s.
Costa Rican architect César Oreamuno has designed a modular capsule that accommodates to the basic needs of a community after a state of emergency or disaster. The units are adaptable and easily assembled in order to account for a variety of situations and respond to a series of unique functions, although the main theme of the project is focused on improving the quality of attention towards the basic needs of crisis victims, as well as encouraging the development of the community.
The City of Montreal has selected KANVA's IMAGO as the winner of Vivre le Chantier Sainte-Cath, a competition seeking to maintain access to and usage of St. Catherine Street, downtown Montreal's primary commercial artery, as it undergoes a four-year construction period. The construction includes infrastructure developments—enhancements to underground infrastructure, new public transit systems, and increased pedestrian access—and while segments of the street will be closed to car traffic, pedestrian paths and all businesses will remain open during construction.
Text description provided by the architects. The result of a research and development project, the Gomos modular system is an effective response to the contemporary need to simplify and speed up the construction process. Composed of reinforced concrete modules, it is a scalable system in which each module leaves the factory completely ready, including all interior and exterior finishes, insulation, window frames, water and electricity and even the fixed furniture pieces. The on site assembly can be completed in just a few days by joining the modules together. The construction process can thus be broken down into four phases: production of the structure; installation of finishes and facilities; transportation; and assembly.
Have you ever wanted to live in a Hobbit House? Or maybe just be closer to nature? Now, with Green Magic Homes’ prefabricated houses, you can. Made with fiber re-enforced polymer modules, the homes can be customized, and take as few as three days to construct.
Picture yourself waking up daily to a 180-degree view of the ocean without leaving the comfort of your living room. The owners of the as-yet-unbuilt Cliff House have teamed up with Modscape of Australia to design their compact dream home, delicately perched above open water, hanging off the cliff's edge. Cliff House redefines "living dangerously" with its vast floor to ceiling windows and slender steel supports acting as the only separation between watching Jaws and actually being in Jaws.
Dive into Cliff House with images, plans and more info after the break.