8 Architects Aiming to Banish Ugly Mobile Homes Forever

The next generation of mobile homes look more like chic abodes than a house on wheels.

James Bartolacci James Bartolacci

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In the last decade, the micro living trend has become well established. As the cost of living and rents in cities across the world continue to rise, residents have been seeking alternative, lower cost types of residences that defy our expectations. One residential trend that continues to rise forgoes the traditional permanent structure in favor of compact mobile spaces. Unlike conventional mobile homes — those with a design and specification to make architects wince — Andrew and Gabriella Morrison’s innovative hOMe features an interior that looks more like a Manhattan loft than a house on wheels.

At a mere 221-square-feet, the mobile residence comfortably crams a fully-equipped kitchen, bathroom and bedroom loft, as well as a staircase that doubles as a storage space. Clean aesthetics, bold black lines and modern amenities make hOMe an attractive alternative to permanent structures, as you have the option to take the plywood-clad structure on the road. The Morrison’s transportable house inspired us to take a look at other architects who are rethinking mobile structures with bold designs that won’t keep you tied down. Read through to see them all:

XBO Mobile Unit by 70°N Arkitektur, Norway

Blurring the boundaries between temporary and mobile architecture, the XBO prototype focuses on keeping resources to a minimum, trying to maximize the qualities of active living, light, and openness, while at the same creating a simple but welcoming habitation. The structure can be easily transported by truck, includes large glass windows, and an interior palette of birch veneer, providing a modern, comfortable feel.

HomeBox by Slawik Architekten, Germany

In the size of an internationally standardized freight container, this experimental transportable wooden structure was developed with different variants for residential uses. Wood cladding was selected because of the material’s low costs, and easy maintenance and repair. HomeBox designs come in two different heights, depending on the spatial needs of residents.

Blob vB3 by dmvA Architecten, Belgium

With an extremely suitable name, the Blob vB3 is a globular mobile structure that looks like an egg sitting in the landscape. The Blob was originally developed as a portable office space, but redesigned to include a bathroom, kitchen, bed, and several niches for storage. The design consists of a timber frame, covered with a stretching material, and plastered with polyester to give it its distinctive eggshell appearance.

The D.O.G. House by Norwich University Design / Build, Northfield, VT

A multidisciplinary group of students from Norwich University designed this mobile, solar powered, environmental field laboratory that can support conservation-based environmental studies through hands-on learning. Beginning with a decommissioned 20-foot intermodal shipping container, the team clad the structure in repurposed wooden materials providing a rustic appearance, while two large solar panels generate electricity for the educational activities housed within.

eco-PERCH by Blue Forest, Great Britain

Developed to meet the demands of the eco-tourism sector for an attractive, affordable, and sustainable high quality accommodation, the eco-PERCH can be delivered, assembled, and commissioned in a matter of days. The cozy design is flexible and can be adapted to a variety of sites where existing infrastructure is in place. The simple, orbital building can be situated on land or perched above the ground like a livable treehouse.

LoftCube by Aisslinger + Bracht, Milan

Designed as an exclusive mobile loft, the LoftCube is an attractive and convenient living space for temporary or everyday lifestyles. The project combines futuristic architecture, 360-degree views, ample daylighting and ventilation, and customizable high-quality materials. The LoftCube is lightweight and easy to install, providing you with an efficient, yet striking contemporary residence in any context.

Absolute Box by altro_studio, Italy

The Absolute Box is a simple mobile construction that lives up to its name: an elongated white box. Made up of a plaster cardboard volume suspended over the ground by two steel trestles, the box is a flexible and malleable space that was purposefully designed without distinguishing features — other than its shape. Emphasizing sustainability, the box features an array of solar panels to allow it to function off the power grid.

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