Ali Kriscenski

PREFAB FRIDAY: Loq Kit Sustainable Housing System

by , 11/30/07

Loq kit, prefabricated housing, modular architecture, sustainable design, Patrick Freet, PAF Architecture, loqkit_1.jpg

Modular design shines in Loq•kit – an innovative, interchangeable idea of home from architect Patrick Freet. This proposed building system utilizes snap-lock components to create walls, infill, and envelope that are adaptable and affordable. Intended for easy assembly that can be customized and changed, Loq•kit technology makes building and remodeling a snap, literally!


Loq•kit is designed to reduce assembly complexity and time while enabling beautiful, unique living space. Standardized components allow for reuse and endless personalized layout possibilities. The modular elements can be reconfigured to accommodate changing needs with ease. Instead of wood, nails, screws, and glue, Loq•kit uses prefabricated plastic and metal parts that offer flexibility and integrated systems. This allows homeowners to create usable space and upgrade without waste or huge renovation costs.

A highlight of this building system is a “plug and play” photovoltaic panel array. An integrated mechanical and electrical scheme means that a potential upgrade to solar is built in to the structure. Roof panel options are opaque, translucent, or solar. When the solar option is in the budget, owners can simply replace a roof panel and capture renewable energy.

Loq•kit won 2nd place in a recent C2C Home Competition, and although the concept is still in development, the designer has launched a detailed website to open dialogue and bring this innovative idea into the public awareness.

+ Loq-kit
+ PAF Architecture

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11 Comments

  1. -mike- June 8, 2008 at 1:52 am

    well i think that maybe is the not answer to sustainible architecture for complete,altough its feasible for some countries, i mean that the project depends on the target.for example my country produce petroleum, and rigth we are killing the planet and all that stuff, but lets be realistics, we cant stop the production just like that, and the need of houses is bigger and bigger, so if the house is made by self products, and they are like the waste during the process of extraction and procesing of the petroleum,that can be called reuse and i repeat, its not the best answer but maybe it is for us rigth now, and it could be an excellent idea to resolve the housing problem..
    PD:that legos houses(someone named like that), could be the mansions of the people who lives now in poor houses in the ghetos,barrios, favelas or whatever you wanna call it!!

  2. Sustainable Housing Sys... March 11, 2008 at 11:57 am

    [...] : Inhabitat. Related PostsNo related [...]

  3. Kat December 4, 2007 at 4:38 am

    finally, lego houses!

  4. Patrick December 2, 2007 at 7:50 pm

    Salvage is exactly the idea. With pick and pull car parts, there is a method for disassembly, and reassembly – without modification of the part, or destroying adjacent components. That is not the case with current wood-based home construction practices. While some components may be salvaged and recycled for particle board, paper, etc. that often not the case. And if it is, it is most likely for recycling purposes – which is not the same as reuse (the pick and pull car parts), but is downcycling. Downcycling requires further energy consumption for producing the new material. The Loq-kit house parts can be easily disassembled and reused, again and again. This is posssible because “plastic” and steel, are ductile materials. These materials allow parts to temporarily give, or bend, so that adjacent components can pass through, or by (similar in concept to a clasp on a backpack). Wood does not allow the temporary deformation needed for parts disassembly.

  5. BarnaStil December 2, 2007 at 8:44 am

    That´s true Patrick, but I think Americans are far too keen to just throw things away and buy new stuff (I am American by the way). The wood casings and everything else wood that cannot be used because of structural integrity can easily be made use of in particle board for example or furniture or making paper instead of harvesting trees just for the specific use. Here is Spain there are people who go around and pick up these materials and a recycling center pays them for them afterward. Then the recycling center sells them to fabricators or recycles them directly. It´s kind of like the idea of those pick and pull car places.

  6. Patrick December 2, 2007 at 1:30 am

    Yes, and no. I agree, petro-based plastics are not a viable strategy for this project. Yet, there are new materials being developed that can substitute for the rigidity, and ductile properties of plastics. How about resin reinforced with Indian grass or hemp? Materiality is important, but concern here misses the point. This project focuses mainly on connectivity. For example, while wood may be a renewable resource, as soon as a laborer drives three nails through it – that door casing is lost forever – because, it is far too easy to buy a new one – than it is to salvage it. –

  7. Michael Mckenzie December 1, 2007 at 8:11 pm

    Hi all,
    Please, allow me to introduce you to compact laminate materials.
    How about a material made from wood waste that is superior to it in every way, available in 300 finishes and with a versatility for both interior and exterior applications that is unmatched.
    FunderMax compact is just such a product and it is now available in North America.
    Thanks, Michael

  8. BarnaStil December 1, 2007 at 5:15 pm

    I also am in Europe and work in architecture. Unfortunately, the idea that you and many other share that wood is not a sustainable building material is wrong. Apart from being able to be recycled (not only into other building materials, but also paper products, AND energy) it`s porosity allows for less use of air conditioning and heating, and it´s a material that can be relatively easily replaced, unlike aluminum and plastics (from petroleum products).
    Aluminum is the worst material environmentally because you must extract ALOT of ore to create a little aluminum and the energy needed to transform ingots into usable materials is a disaster because it´s not just extruding a material, think of the gas and oil for the machines that extract it, then the coal fired plant that delivers electricity to the fabricator, etc. etc.. I think that too many people are content to feel that something is green because it can be recycled…people need to also think about the process and use of energy that got that material there and the process that´s going to get it back recycled. I remember a lecture I attended a few weeks ago here in Spain where they said that if you were to completely build a wood house and burn it to the ground, the emissions would be something like half of those of only constructing the same building made with brick and concrete.

  9. Emperor December 1, 2007 at 8:54 am

    Dear Barna Stil

    If the plastic and metal used in the construction is recycled it is a green home, I’m not saying they are but they could be. As an European I personally think homes built from wood is not sustainable but I’m sure many people around the world would disagree with me on that.

  10. BarnaStil December 1, 2007 at 6:54 am

    These houses are horrible. The design is esthetically pleasing, but as for being sustainable…hardly. The resources and energy needed to create metal profiles and the petroleum for the plastic DOES NOT make this offering eco-friendly in absolute. Just because a material is recyclable doesn´t mean it´s the best.

  11. Brad November 30, 2007 at 12:03 pm

    too cool.

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