It’s been a low-intensity pleasure watching the pre-fab houses being constructed and installed for MoMA’s upcoming Home Delivery exhibition. For a variety of reasons, none of which involve seeing it completed in person, mind you, I like Kieran Timberlake’s Cellophane House the best so far.
The shortest explanation is it’s the one I could most see myself living in. Its vertical plan is urban and density-friendly. It’s extremely advanced and efficient in terms of its materials–the Bosch Rexroth extruded aluminum beams have the aesthetic sexiness, functional integrity, and off-the-shelf goodness that updates the innovations of the Eames House without merely aping its form. And its sustainability profile sounds excellent. Beyond this modernist idealism, it seems to truly extend and expand on the efficiency/quality promises of prefabrication; KT’s production paradigm of simultaneous component assembly is adapted from the automotive and aviation industries.
And part of the appeal may be the architects’ level of engagement and the amount of detail they’ve contributed to the Home Delivery construction blog, especially compared to some of the other firms. I loved this detail from a couple of weeks ago about bringing the finished building modules into the city from the factory in western New Jersey:
Time constraints, clearance limits for bridges and tunnels, and both local and federal Department of Transportation laws were taken into account to orchestrate the delivery of Cellophane House. New Jersey has a law which prohibits oversized loads from traveling on their roads at night, while New York has a law prohibiting oversized loads from traveling during the day. Therefore, all trucks will park on the New Jersey side of the George Washington Bridge before nightfall, and cross the bridge into New York before daybreak. Rigging is scheduled to commence at 6:00 a.m.
Cellophane House: Delivery [momahomedelivery.org]
KieranTimberlake site [KieranTimberlake.com]
KT just put out a book/DVD about Cellophane House’s most immediate precursor, Loblolly House, which was built on a remote island in the Chesepeake Bay [amazon]