Studying in Europe and looking for a decent place to live at a fair price? Welcome to the club. Almost all European cities’ universities are located in central districts that are generally “reknown” for sky-rocketing rents. Bjarke Ingles Group (BIG) have just completed the first modular floating unit of housing start up Urban Rigger.
The pioneer project will help Copenhagen students to take advantage of the city’s central underutilized and underdeveloped harbour area. A socialising-oriented design that would even come at a 600$ rent.
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Student housing is an issue throughout all over Europe. “By introducing a building typology optimized for harbor cities we can introduce a solution that will keep students at the heart of the city” says Bjarke Ingels.
“My oldest son needed a place to live when he was going to university, When we went online to see the availability for student housing somewhere close to us [in Copenhagen], it dawned on us that it was a nightmare”. Says Kim Loudrup, cofounder of the Copenhagen housing startup Urban Rigger.
While students expecations keep dropping, the standardized container system has been developed to allow goods to be transported anywhere in the world in a complex network of operators at a very low cost. “By making use of the standard container system we are offered the framework for an extremely flexible building typology”.
The buoyant Urban Rigger is composed of stacked container units disposed in a circle. “We can create studio residences which frame a centralized winter garden”. And this is used as a common meeting place for students as well.
“The education of our youth is one of the best investments any society can make” add at Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) that owns a 10% stake in Urban Rigger start up. The project envisions replicating their model in other cities grappling with housing shortages… and sea level rise as well.
The triangular composition framing a central courtyard allows to minimise the footprint of the pontoon while opening views to the sea. Courtyards create opportunities for community activites within each unit.
“As weather in Denmark changes drastically from season to season, we enclosed the gaps with greenhouses glass”. This solution minimises the thermal exposure during the winter months to enclose the largest possile amount of space with the minimal thermal amount of surface.
Images: courtesy of Bjarke Ingels Group.