June 2014 - present
The amount of people living in the world is continuously growing. At the same time, in Western countries, we see household sizes are becoming smaller and our living standards are becoming higher. Per person, we will occupy more space. At the same time, especially in large cities, space becomes more and more expensive. With these trends, should we consider living and working in smaller spaces?
This exploration investigates small design solutions for furniture and rooms to occupy a smaller amount of space and combining those solutions in a design for a home or other buildings. How can we save space? How much space can we save? What would the space look like and how would we live in it? What can we use that saved space for? What are the advantages and disadvantages of occupying less space?
How can we save space?
For "Space Saving Architecture" I differentiate two types:
- We can reduce our standards by occupying a lower amount of square meters or cubic meters. I call this "Tiny Architecture". We can reduce the size of the rooms (especially reduce the amount of unused space), reduce the size of the furniture, reduce the amount of rooms (e.g. sharing rooms with other people) or reduce the amount of volume taken by the structure of the building. Taking it one step further, we can think of smarter rooms or smarter furniture by making them multifunctional, thus reducing the amount of furniture pieces necessary.
- We can reduce the amount of space we occupy when we are not using that space at the time. This requires a dynamic building. I call this type of Space Saving Architecture "Resizing Architecture". This was the starting point of resizing functions in the City Accelerator project. This study focusses on this type.
Several studies for a resizing home
A snapshot of the performed studies on resizing homes:
- Season adapting home, a quick study
We use our home in different ways during the seasons. In the summer we use our garden more often than we do during the winter. We can use this principle to save space, by reducing the size of the living room while increasing the size of the garden during summer and vice versa during winter.
- Resizing rooms within a home
The rooms reduce in size when they are not used.
- Shrinking home when unused
The rooms do not have to resize individually. The home only reduces its size when it is unused.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of Resizing Architecture?
- Cheaper, both because a small building requires less material to built, less repairs, less costs to heat and the occupant pays less taxes when occupying a smaller plot.
- Small buildings could be movable, thus dismissing the need to sell when you move.
- Small buildings could be stacked, occupying even less suqare meters.
- Environmentally friendly, because less amount of material is used, less amount of space needs to be heated and more square meters in the world are left for nature.
- Less cleaning
- Could not be suitable for people wanting a higher standard of living.
- Continuously adjusting your home to your current needs could become annoying and perphaps difficult, especially for elderly and physically disabled people.
Schematic representation of rooms in a building and the two types of Space Saving Architecture
Shrinking home when unused.
First design result of a resizing apartment as part of the City Accelerator project. The principle of resizing architecture could be used to reduce travel time in the city. This design is currently further developed.
© Copyright Lara Tomholt 2015