The Open Architecture Challenge is an international design competition that's hosted every two years. This year, Architecture for Humanity and Orient Global hosted the competition to bring the architecture, design, and engineering community together with students and teachers to envision the classroom of the future. After receiving over a thousand designs, each submission was rated on feasibility, sustainability, innovation in design, and overall design quality. Now, after four rounds, there are eight finalists and one of these will win in September. Check these designs out and tell us which is your favorite:
A couple weeks ago, we mentioned you can buy the McGlasson weeHouse in Duluth, Minnesota, and now we have news that a weeHouse STUDIO is for sale — for the crazy price of $48,000. It's currently located in Siren, Wisconsin, but the buyer can have it shipped anywhere the land will take you for $1,000, plus about $7 per mile. The 324 square-foot pad is just perfect as an artist retreat, guest/bunk house, yoga studio, or freelance workspace.
This is the Living Zero Home, which was commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy and built by All American Homes. The home was on display in Chicago last weekend and will move to about fifteen other destinations throughout the year, including Louisville, Greensboro, Atlanta, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, and Denver, among other cities. The modern demonstration home features a Smart Living System — both an energy management and home monitoring tool — which helps owners save money and provides an alert for potential problems, such as a water pipe leak. The home includes a number of other green elements, too:
You're probably familiar with Brad Pitt's juggernaut project, Make It Right — back in December 2007, we talked about thirteen single-family designs planned for construction in the Lower 9th Ward. A number of these have been built, and the progress has been interesting to watch. In addition, Make It Right just announced fourteen new duplex designs from top international architects. The designs emphasize community, affordability, flexibility, and sustainability, and starting in mid-August, Make It Right expects to break ground on two of these. Check out a preview of all fourteen and the firms behind the designs:
On Cherry Street in Port Townsend, Washington, a confluence modern version of an ideabox prefab was installed. The 840 square-foot home has an open kitchen and living area flanked by two bedrooms / bathrooms on the ends. It sits perfectly on a small lot and the deck leads to a vegetable garden where the new homeowners will be able to live off the land, to a certain extent.
Sustainable design firm Mithun just updated their website with details of an interesting farmworker housing pilot project in Washington state. With the sponsorship of the Seattle Archidiocesan Housing Authority and a grant from Enterprise Community Partners, Mithun designed three prefabricated modules to provide a model for affordable housing for farmworkers and their families. According to Mithun, the state has tens of thousands of farmworkers who are forced to compete for scant affordable living options, and these prefab 580 square foot homes may change life for a lot of them.