Matt Lucraft proposes Japanese-influenced modular building system to tackle housing scarcity

The latest movie in our Dezeen x MINI Living series explores Bartlett graduate Matt Lucraft’s concept for a modular building system that aims to address London’s housing crisis.

Matt Lucraft’s proposal, titled the Dagenham Breach Housing Co-operative, is a plan for a settlement of self-built and customisable homes that seeks to tackle the scarcity of affordable housing in the British capital.

The plan would initially be implemented on a brownfield site in the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, where housing is relatively affordable compared to other parts of the city, but employs a open-source building system that could be rolled out to areas further afield to make use of unused land.

Lucraft envisions that prospective home owners would use a piece of software that allows them to create digital designs for their homes, which would then be prefabricated and delivered to site ready for assembly.

Additional modules could then be tacked on the existing buildings to extend them as required, minimising costs and waste by offering residents homes tailored to their needs.

The plans combine the pitched roofs of English vernacular architecture with the typically compact proportions of Japanese housing. Lucraft also drew from the post-war Japanese Metabolist architecture movement, which promoted the use of modular plug-in capsules to create megastructures that emulate organic growth.

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