A Modular Shared Home : Approaching affordable housing through sharing habits and modularity

University essay from Umeå universitet/Arkitekthögskolan vid Umeå universitet

Abstract: The world’s population is increasing and every day, more people are coming to the cities. People are constantly relocating their houses for meeting their needs. As societies are growing and mobility in cities is raising, cities would face challenges like accommodating the population inexpensively and providing good quality of life and stable social and environmental infrastructure for them. However, due to the fixed regulated and unadaptable construction market, the architecture doesn’t meet the changing needs of inhabitants, therefore, every day the housing market is more unaffordable because of the high demand for housing developments, lands scarce, etc. Architecture needs to be flexible to adjust itself to the current market. Since most of the relocations and high demands for building new housing projects occur when built spaces fail to meet their occupants’ growing needs. This thesis tries to find an alternative framework for designing a flexible one whereby architecture is shaped by the user’s needs and can adjust itself in a long period. This thesis also works on designing an environment that responds to the social, economic, and environmental needs of residents as one united community. Therefore, it uses a shared living idea as an affordable alternative for making houses cheaper and creating a more stable social environment for inhabitants. The content of this thesis is categorized upon the following narrative. Firstly, this thesis is trying to deepen its understanding of the matter of shared living and its possible advantages and disadvantages for producing stable social and economical infrastructure. For this purpose, it analyses a notion of shared living and shared economy through studying successful case studies. Secondly, by studying and utilizing metabolic design criteria, the thesis will form an understanding of a more sustainable approach toward architecture and built environment to design an affordable housing system that provides high quality of life for inhabitants through responding to their needs. Thirdly, the thesis will frame its design strategy based on shared living perspective and metabolic design criteria. The thesis then will illustrate its steps and methods to achieve flexible architecture through designing its module, structure, and material. Lastly, it will discuss its findings on how the shared living approach and metabolic philosophy can aid architects to design more sustainable housing units that can meet their resident’s needs through a long period and make strong social, economic, and environmental infrastructure.

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