These prefab floating houses are meant to populate disused spaces along 50 miles of waterways in London. Complemented by 150 hectares of “bluefield” space in the docklands and marinas, this conceptual design aims to bring 7,500 affordable homes to the British capital. The project was designed in collaboration between Baca Architects and Floating Homes Ltd and is among the 100 shortlisted entries at the New Ideas for Housing competition which addresses Greater London’s housing crisis.
The entry, named “Buoyant Starts” aims to provide high-quality, prefab floating homes at an affordable price and engage the underused water spaces of the capital. The second concept called Innovation Licence focuses on providing one-off building permits for projects that don’t comply with London’s current planning policy. The architects claim that the Innovation Licence could “deliver more housing, more quickly, and with higher densities”. The permits would be granted for innovative projects which engage challenging sites such as floodplains and deprived areas.
The team has already unveiled a floating housing concept-Amphibious House-which was designed to address the issue of underused urban areas prone to flooding. The competition jury will announce 10 winning ideas in mid-October, following which the winners will be invited to join a Greater London Authority working group and discuss the ideas and their potential implementation.