A place to call HOME

Temporary shelter concept in east London garages wins HOME design competition

by Sian 25 October 2012
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    London-based architecture practice Levitt Bernstein has been announced as the winner of Building Trust International’s latest design competition. HOME invited studios across the world to come up with innovative ideas to combat a housing deficit in the UK and Building Trust International were inundated with over 400 entry submissions.

    Levitt Bernstein’s successful concept involves inserting temporary accommodation units into unused garages on east London housing estates. The ‘pop-up’ design includes a kit-of-parts which can be manufactured offsite and installed swiftly and easily on the estates. Both demountable and reusable, the units can be inhabited immediately and have been given rave reviews from the Director of Development at YMCA.

    Judge Andy Redfearn commented: “Levitt Bernstein provided a creative and cost effective solution to providing accommodation for single people in an urban setting. One was able to easily visualise the concept becoming a reality and I look forward to seeing the first people move in.”

    When the recession hit the UK several years and unemployment began to rise, issues of homelessness became more prominent. Levitt Bernstein’s winning concept will be realised in association with Homes through Apprenticeships With Skills for Employment (HAWSE) where unemployed people without permanent residences are trained in a certain skill, in this case construction.

    David Cole, Founding Partner of Building Trust International was delighted with the quantity and quality of the competition submissions: “We are very excited to be moving forward with the winning proposal and with the level of detail expressed in some of the other shortlisted designs we hope they also have a chance to be realised. The competition has been a great success and highlights the key role that architects and designers have in providing solutions to social housing problems occurring on their own doorsteps.”

    For more on Building Trust International’s next design competition (considering flood-resistant housing in Cambodia) please click here.

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