Cities are becoming more densely populated, and as a result people are becoming used to living in smaller and smaller spaces. And when you think about it, any room in your home that isn’t being used by anyone at that moment is just temporarily wasted space. That’s why the Pop-Up Apartment concept apartment from a team of TU Delft in the Netherlands makes so much sense.
The Hyperbody design team imagines a future in which your apartment doesn’t contain separate rooms and sectioned areas for certain activities. They envision a 50 square meter apartment that feels like it’s twice that size through the use of creatively moving interior components.
A motor under the floorboards moves flexible walls around to form whatever room you need at the moment. The walls fit into grooves that criss-cross the entire floor (the thought of keeping those grooves clean makes the clean freak in us want to cry) and use them as guides to slide into position. As the polypropylene wall panels move, their shapes change; furniture is formed from cuts in the propylene that pop out when manipulated in a certain way. Chairs, tables, a bed, and privacy partitions are all fluid and constantly shifting.
It may look like a wild concept, but this is actually doable, as the designers have begun to demonstrate using prototypes.
All of these changes would be controlled at the residents’ will with a smartphone app that would effortlessly move everything into place. The walls can also be moved manually in case you ever lose your phone but really need to change your dining room into a bedroom. The team constructed a digital model of the entire apartment along with a full-scale prototype of a section of the home. The idea is promising, and the team believes that within a decade they will be able to create a fully working transforming apartment.
“Like with a Swiss pocketknife, only the desired shapes are being folded out, while the others stay razor-thin in the existing walls. Therefore, a high variety of different spatial configurations is possible, creating only the spaces which are needed at a certain time. Bedrooms are not needed during the day, and can be transformed into a working space or large living room. The pop-up apartment allows to live in a continuously changing space, real-time tailored to the wishes of the future user.”