Modular units, Kranj
Modular flexibility for changing lifestyles
SLOVENIA - New developments in architecture are often best seen in small projects, especially now that residential building is undergoing rapid changes as a result of the current economic crisis. Young architects are therefore becoming more active in exploring alternative social, economic and ecological solutions. The shift from the classic family house to smaller-scale, prefabricated residences requires both creative thinking and innovative design. With a number of prototypes constructed in 2012, COODO modular units take today's marked lifestyle changes as their starting point, presenting a stylishly minimal yet upscale vision for adaptable living.
COODO, contemporary living, seeks to address spatial problems while improving existing standards of living by developing new dwelling types. To this end, the Slovenian architects have designed a group of modular units with a sleek, modern aesthetic and very functional compatibility. With names like 'MY HOME residential building', 'MY CUISINE summer kitchen', 'MY SHADE pergola', 'MY LEISURE pavilion', and 'MY VACATION mobile living', the set of modular units can be personalized to suit different tastes – the buyer can choose facade material, colour and texture, among other things – and located in a variety of surroundings, from natural landscapes to urban environments.
Not only can the materials be adapted to users' specifications, but the various units themselves can be customized in a variety of ways. The pergola, for instance, can be an independent element in a garden or placed adjacent to a house, and its roof can be fitted with glass panels, a fabric canopy, or even covered in climbing plants, depending upon requirements of climate and usage. Combining it with the pavilion is also an option. While the pavilion itself can be a lounge, play area, exhibition space or open bar, glazing the unit allows for further possibilities. The architects suggest, for instance, an office, café, greenhouse, sauna or fitness room. Several pavilion units can be joined together to create a larger space, which can in turn be combined with the kitchen unit or attached to the pergola. In short, the functional possibilities are perhaps only limited by the imagination (and budget) of the user.
The residential unit, the core element of the modular group, is essentially a prefabricated home with all the advantages of flexible use. Like the smaller units, it has a galvanized and powder coated supporting steel structure, plus elements made from materials like Corian, Alucobond, polyester and wood. Although it is formed by a combination of separate units determined by purpose (bedrooms, living room, bathroom, services and staircase), its layout and appearance can be specified by users according to their needs. The layout can also be adapted to changing requirements later on. While the architects assert that the vacation units can be made energy self-sufficient, certainly an advantage for mobile living, more practical energy, utility and budget concerns for the rest of the group of modular units are not specifically addressed in the design concept.
Tuesday | 26 June | 2012 | Slovenia | Dutton R. Hauhart