South African architect Clara da Cruz Almeida and designers Dokter + Misses have just launched a new and sustainable pod living system, the POD-Indawo. The locally designed and manufactured “nano-pod home” provides environmentally responsible urban living solutions specifically designed to meet the needs of today’s South African residents, especially young professionals.
The compact, 17-square-meter structure, which was recently unveiled at a local design event in Johannesburg, uses minimal resources in its assembly, lowering costs and environmental impact. All of the units are equipped with solar arrays to provide for the compact structure’s energy needs. A light color palette of white, mint green and grey was chosen for the exterior to reflect the hot summer sun. A shaded “backyard deck” and ventilating circular opening in the unit provide optimal air circulation.
In addition to its sustainable properties, the POD-Indawo concept provides a comfortable and functional space that adapts to the homeowners’ varying needs throughout their life. The pod’s modular construction allows for multiple units to be combined in order to create a larger living space. For the interior, the designers implemented a number of space-saving techniques, such as foldable tables and couches, along with numerous enclosed storage units that provide space-efficient and comfortable living quarters.
According to Almeida, most South Africans do not own their land so she hopes that the Pod design will become a feasible way for people — especially young professionals — to invest in a home without having to buy the land it rests upon. The cost of the POD-Indawo units has not been officially announced yet; however, because of the level of customization available the team estimates that each unit could run between R200 000 and R700 000 ($18,000 and $63,000).