New Houses II – build houses like cars

When it comes to houses, every Human has basically the same needs, because every human has basically the same anatomy and the same basic demands. We need a roof, a place to sleep, a place to eat, a place to keep our bodies clean and space to spend our time.
 

The rest, like having an extra place to work, or a place to store stuff like cars, is already optional. Some of all these space might be the same, though maybe not this literally
So it comes down to what is tolerable, and how big we need the individual space to be, according to our lifestyles. So the basic components are the same, and we just have questions of additional components, sizes, and styles. 
 
Also floor plans, but I’m leaving that out for now. Might be realized through different basic plans, though. 
 
This far, this is all like I imagine classical architecture to be. Town Houses are all the same in the basic plan. If we want to build a house, many companies have standard plans which they customise for you at an extra cost.
 
we can build equal houses in a row, but we still do it by hand -coloursontheinside - build houses like cars - source: nazca-alliance.com
we can build equal houses in a row, but we still do it by hand – source: nazca-alliance.com
 
In the near future, I don’t see a way to change these things. At least not more than anyone else has done before. So we can assume it might stay the way it is. But what causes costs from now on, once the plans are finished, is that each building is handcrafted. People have been building these things for ages. Yet they still make every one building as if it were a prototype. Of course, the single practices are being improved, but overall the building process hasn’t changed much. 
 
this is where the change happened for car production.  - coloursontheinside - build houses like cars - source: seriouswheels.com
this is where the change happened for car production. source: seriouswheels.com

how car production changed 

When Henry Ford’s Model T entered the market in 1908, it had a price tag of 825$ (21.900$ today ), while most other cars were above 2000$. (53.100$ today
 
He did this by splitting the work to single, simple tasks. Before that, cars were built by highly skilled craftsmen, who would’ve been able to build a car all alone, because they knew everything about it. With Ford, everyone could take part in the process of building a car by having only one single, simple task to do all day. It also means ford could hire unlearned men, which of course also saves cost. The concept of assembly lines has been industry standard ever since. Though it has steadily been enhanced by machines and robots, which led to further increase in productivity.
 
On the ecological side, having the possibility to make a lot of things in a cheap and quick manner also makes them way more disposable, leading to more problems with trash. This is not based in the technology, but in the ways people are inventing to make money for themselves. I assume everything that reduces the need for people to work is basically a good thing. I might discuss this later.
 
So, if houses are so expensive, and basically consist of the same things everytime, we should consider one of Australia’s most innovative architects proposal: 
“I think it’s crazy that if we’re going to talk about sustainability and affordability that we don’t go and build houses like cars”
– Andrew Maynard 
why dont we build houses like tesla builds cars? - coloursontheinside - build houses like cars source: mobile.nytimes.com
why dont we build houses like tesla builds cars? source: mobile.nytimes.com

houses like cars?

So, lets open up a factory, where we start with a piece of foundation, after which every worker adds a brick and some mortar until we have a house. Then we roll it out the factory and drive it toward sunset. 
 
Okay, we can’t compare it like this. And actually, we already have a lot of task-splitting in contemporary house construction. But imagine we would actually build he whole house in one go. We could have specialised equipment to do this cheap and easy. 
 
  • build houses like cars - source:domplans.com
    source:domplans.com

modular homes  

The problem with this is, though we can build a whole house in one place, we can’t ship a whole house without a lot of cost and effort. So for a long time, people have been building prefab houses, delivering them with a truck and crane.  Today, you can have almost any design prefabricated. Most articles on this seem to be slightly partial, but what makes sense is that they can be built faster and cheaper. This is achieved because the houses are all built in the same hall by the same team, not being affected by weather or having to carry their materials to whatever remote patch of soil you chose for your dwelling. 
parasitary buildings in paris - coloursontheinside - build houses like cars -  source: inhabitat.com
parasitic buildings in paris – source: inhabitat.com
Talking about choosing a place for your building – if all the good estates are already taken, why not just build your home atop another house?
 
Yes, really. They started doing this in Paris. They passed a law, enabling house owners to add parts to their houses, and some company came up with this design for adding parasitic modules atop other houses. 
 

This is a true bottom-up approximation of vertical habitats, which are an interesting thing in themselves and might be covered later, as well as buildings with new bricks and buildings with no bricks. Stay tuned!


Also published on Medium.

2 comments Add yours
  1. Hi there! This article could not be written any
    better! Looking through this article reminds me of my
    previous roommate! He constantly kept talking about this.
    I most certainly will forward this article to him. Fairly certain he will have a good read.
    Thank you for sharing!

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