Students design stackable house of the future, perfect for urban living


Image: DURA
Image: DURA
The innovative DURA home's design provides an array of eco-friendly, weather-resistant benefits.

Most people want to live close to the city, be it for the vibrant lifestyle, or for an easier work commute but congestion and increasingly high housing costs mean it’s just a dream for many.

Enter some savvy students in New York City who have developed an ingenious strategy to make city living not only infinitely more possible, but also more eco-friendly.

The undergraduate students at New York City College of Technology have designed a prototype home that is a glimpse into the future. The DURA house (diverse, urban, resilient, adaptable) is an impressive open-concept one-bedroom with features that make it a zero-energy, solar, weather-resistant living space.

Its weather resistant  attributes mean it could withstand disasters like Hurricane Sandy. The students design of a stackable unit including three layers of breathable membrane and air-tight sealing has survived testing by blowers.

Builders are currently completing the design that resulted from the collective efforts of 60 students, and slots neatly within NYC’s urban landscape at the end of a pier at the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Alexander Aptekar, the City Tech professor overseeing the project, said “To go from having to draw it to seeing it live is an amazing experience for them.”

The environmentally conscious home looking straight towards the future, will compete worldwide in the Solar Decathalon – a student design contest in September. This will require disassembling the modular home into three parts, which will then be transported to Irvine, California for judging.

The house will then return to brooklyn where the students hope to donate it to someone in need, perhaps a disabled veteran.


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