Wednesday, 3 June 2009


The picture above is of the bleeding edge of the British construction industry, the technology that will solve the crisis in British housebuilding in terms of environmental sustainability, build quality and aesthetics. Behold, the House Pod.
There was a time when the future looked like the future, and so on and so forth, but now all the future aspires to be is profitable. And that means shite like this. We've seen this before on this blog.
They're weird, though. The roofline on this terrace alternates high gables and dormer windows to try to give the impression that these are triple fronted detached houses, when noone could make that mistake thanks to the oversized porch canopies (with flashings and wheelie bins in syncopated rhythms along the street).
These houses will be substantially built off site in a factory. We've heard this before (almost every six months. The biggest noise I remember is Yorkon and its Murray Grove flats in London. Yorkon seems to have given up on resi now, by the looks of its website), and it hasn't transformed the supply chain yet.
Listen, though, there will be 'no compromise on quality' in this factory-made future, according to the press release, because 'The House Pod is building regulation compliant'. Well, that's a relief! The future of mass-manufactured sustainable housing will keep the rain out. The text also describes how the pod 'can currently meet levels 3, 4 and 5 of the Code for Sustainable Homes.' So you can choose how slowly you want your modular development to kill the planet.
Naked, the House Pod looks like this, which is, to my mind, an improvement, although there are DDA issues with the front door.


  1. Omitting all the stupid gables (which are uneccessary as the windows come below the eaves line) and running every group of, say, 20 units together, would save a fortune (not least on rainwater pipes which give a much-unneeded "vertical emphasis" to the elevation), and produce something not unlike the perfectly reasonable 1880 terraced house I'm sitting in right now. Which will probably be sustainably bulldozed to make way for this (more expensive to build) shit.
    And how come the fenestration on the naked version bears no resemblence to the "finished" ones?

  2. Well, if these eco houses save out planet, why you so against them? Wanna make a trip to Volcanic Venus once earth crushes under the pile of pollutants farted by humans?

  3. Mr Byter, that is the best comment I have ever had on my blog. Thanks a lot, and see you on Volcanic Venus!

  4. Actually Mr Byter, I don't think these houses will save the planet at all as they appear to use plastic windows, which fart out the most pollutants of all.

  5. Those porch canopies are a pet hate of mine, I have seen the same thing tacked on to nice 1950 & 60s houses in Belfast - this is after the perfectly good concrete canopies were smashed off. They will probably rot in a few years - then maybe we can rebuild the concrete ones again.

  6. If only they looked like proper pod capsule dwellings out of the Jetsons...

  7. Perhaps they are triple-fronted after all - the middle door is obviously just the main entrance, you will notice only this door has the bin.