Design firm, James Law Cybertecture, has created an experimental low-cost home solution to Hong Kong’s housing crisis.
According to the 14th Annual Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, Hong Kong is ranked the least-affordable housing market in the world for the eighth time in a row.
James Law Cybertecture aims to create a solution to that problem through micro homes called OPods. Measuring 2.5m in diameter and 9.2sqm, the homes can be unlocked with a smartphone.
Each OPod is created using two concrete pipes that are commonly used as underground storm-water drainage. The concrete material means the homes provide good insulation qualities for both heat and fire safety.
Inside the walls are whitewashed and a flat wooden floor has been installed to make it easier for occupants to walk around.
Each OPod has a living area, cooking facilities, toilet, shower and storage for one to two people and features space-saving furniture, such as a bench seat that can be folded down and transformed into a bed.
The glazed front panel doubles as a door and window and additional natural light is let into the home via strip lighting under the shelves and a lamp on the wall.
James Law, the founder of James Law Cybertecture, feels that OPods are a good solution for young people as the modular homes can be stacked to create buildings or communities, which can be fitted into small pockets of space in the centre of Hong Kong.
The design firm, James Law Cybertecture, say the OPods cost just under $20,000 each to manufacture, and could be rented out for less than $550 a month. The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the centre of Hong Kong is currently just over $3,000 per month.
The OPod housing project is still in the experimental stages and James Law is currently in negotiation with local government.