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Build an Eco-Friendly Abode With This Prefabricated House

Building a cozy—and eco-friendly—abode doesn’t have to be time-consuming or wasteful. That’s the motto behind PopUp House, a concept that was created by French architectural and design firm Multipod Studio.

The company’s sustainable, pre-fabricated house prototypes can be quickly assembled using only a standard electric screwdriver and a little elbow grease. They don’t require heating or cooling systems thanks to their insulation, and the structures are also solar-powered as well as fashioned from 100 percent recyclable materials. The houses boast multiple rooms and their exteriors are customizable.

The PopUp House may be efficient, but it doesn’t come cheap. According to Multipod Studio’s website, materials typically run between 300€ and 360€ (about $327 to $392) per square meter of floor area, and contractors are estimated to bill between 1300€ and 2000€ (about $1416 to $2178) per square meter. And no, you can’t cut costs by building it yourself; PopUp House requires that you hire its trained construction team, who are reportedly equipped with special tools to “guarantee the quality and speed of implementation.”

And those wanting to build one of the structures in the United States will have to wait. So far, several PopUp houses have been constructed in France and pilot projects have been launched throughout Europe. Learn more about the unique architectural concept in the video above, or visit the PopUp House website to check out the full range of designs.

All images courtesy of YouTube.

[h/t Inhabitat]

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Courtesy Umbrellium
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Design
These LED Crosswalks Adapt to Whoever Is Crossing
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Courtesy Umbrellium

Crosswalks are an often-neglected part of urban design; they’re usually just white stripes on dark asphalt. But recently, they’re getting more exciting—and safer—makeovers. In the Netherlands, there is a glow-in-the-dark crosswalk. In western India, there is a 3D crosswalk. And now, in London, there’s an interactive LED crosswalk that changes its configuration based on the situation, as Fast Company reports.

Created by the London-based design studio Umbrellium, the Starling Crossing (short for the much more tongue-twisting STigmergic Adaptive Responsive LearnING Crossing) changes its layout, size, configuration, and other design factors based on who’s waiting to cross and where they’re going.

“The Starling Crossing is a pedestrian crossing, built on today’s technology, that puts people first, enabling them to cross safely the way they want to cross, rather than one that tells them they can only cross in one place or a fixed way,” the company writes. That means that the system—which relies on cameras and artificial intelligence to monitor both pedestrian and vehicle traffic—adapts based on road conditions and where it thinks a pedestrian is going to go.

Starling Crossing - overview from Umbrellium on Vimeo.

If a bike is coming down the street, for example, it will project a place for the cyclist to wait for the light in the crosswalk. If the person is veering left like they’re going to cross diagonally, it will move the light-up crosswalk that way. During rush hour, when there are more pedestrians trying to get across the street, it will widen to accommodate them. It can also detect wet or dark conditions, making the crosswalk path wider to give pedestrians more of a buffer zone. Though the neural network can calculate people’s trajectories and velocity, it can also trigger a pattern of warning lights to alert people that they’re about to walk right into an oncoming bike or other unexpected hazard.

All this is to say that the system adapts to the reality of the road and traffic patterns, rather than forcing pedestrians to stay within the confines of a crosswalk system that was designed for car traffic.

The prototype is currently installed on a TV studio set in London, not a real road, and it still has plenty of safety testing to go through before it will appear on a road near you. But hopefully this is the kind of road infrastructure we’ll soon be able to see out in the real world.

[h/t Fast Company]

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iStock
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fun
Here's How to Turn an IKEA Box Into a Spaceship
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iStock

Since IKEA boxes are designed to contain entire furniture items, they could probably fit a small child once they’re emptied of any flat-packed component pieces. This means they have great potential as makeshift forts—or even as play spaceships, according to one of the Swedish furniture brand’s print ads, which was spotted by Design Taxi.

First highlighted by Ads of the World, the advertisement—which was created by Miami Ad School, New York—shows that IKEA is helping customers transform used boxes into build-it-yourself “SPÄCE SHIPS” for children. The company provides play kits, which come with both an instruction manual and cardboard "tools" for tiny builders to wield during the construction process.

As for the furniture boxes themselves, they're emblazoned with the words “You see a box, they see a spaceship." As if you won't be climbing into the completed product along with the kids …

Check out the ad below:

[h/t Design Taxi]

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