Together with Arup, Amsterdam architecture practice GG-loop has unveiled designs for Mitosis, a modular building system that emphasizes regenerative, sustainable living and urban development. Designed with biophilic principles and parametric design tools, the prefab timber modules would be optimized for flexibility and scalability to allow for construction in a variety of urban settings. Options range from off-grid, single-family homes to high-density, mixed-use zones. The project builds on GG-loop’s pilot project Freebooter, an award-winning pair of prefabricated, cross-laminated timber apartments completed last year in Amsterdam.

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rendering of curving, dark-timber buildings

Named after the biological process of a single cell dividing itself into two identical daughter cells, the Mitosis project was designed to mimic a flexible organism that evolves to adapt to different settings. The scalable buildings would be made up of individual, rhomboid-shaped modules stacked together to create shared outdoor spaces and private terraces. These outdoor areas would be generously planted with greenery to reconnect residents with nature and to offset the urban heat island effect. The lightweight timber units would primarily consist of cross-laminated timber, which would be reinforced with hybrid concrete construction in larger scale developments.

Related: This new 3D-printed house was built by a portable robot in just 48 hours

rendering of people walking in courtyard between timber buildings
rendering of large, geometric, green sofa in a modern apartment

“Mitosis adopts the 14 principles of biophilic design and articulates the relationships between nature, human biology and the design of the built environment,” the architects explained in a project statement. “Its construction is organic and flexible, providing large areas of urban and vertical farming, greenhouses, wildlife corridors and integration of habitat creation, that encourage shared outdoor activities among residents.”

rendering of white dining table across from kitchen with light wood cabinets
rendering of modern apartment opening up to wooden outdoor balcony

Collective living is a central tenet of Mitosis, which would not only provide shared outdoor activities but also amenities to bring neighbors together and encourage them to participate in environmentally friendly activities. Social cohesion could help to promote residents’ health and well-being, which would also be boosted through a natural materials palette, flexible layouts and easy access to greenery in both private and public areas.

+ GG-loop

Images via GG-loop with Hexapixel

rendering of plants growing on sides of timber building