B.A.S. 4th Year student, Emily Ayotte: Flexi House - Designing Affordability
The City of Vancouver recently launched Eco-Density -- a strategy for intensifying Vancouver’s residential neighbourhoods that promotes transit use, walkability and greater housing affordability. Sustainably designed infill housing along laneways is a key component of this initiative. Formerly only available for rent, laneway houses offer exciting affordable housing opportunities for families in a time where home ownership is increasingly out of reach.
While urban areas in Canada struggle with housing affordability, the gap between average income and real estate prices is highest in Vancouver. The new regulations supporting affordable development present opportunities for innovative design and building techniques. FLEXI House is a transformable laneway home that uses several space-saving and space-making strategies to enable it to adapt to life’s everyday changes.
The house sits at the rear of a slender lot on land that is leased from an existing single-family home in Vancouver’s Marpole neighbourhood. It features a transformable structure complemented by rotating, extending and folding interior elements that enable the house to be configured in three main ways. One features an enclosed electric car garage, another a covered patio space, and the third two guest bedrooms. The goal of the FLEXI House is to provide a sustainable alternative to traditional, rigid building strategies. Its transformable structure can adapt its shape or function according to changing circumstances, evolving needs and a range of inhabitants. Paired with flexible, responsible materials and construction methods, the home empowers residents to shape their surroundings with spontaneous ease.
Faculty Supervisor: Sheryl Boyle