Building Blocks Homes

What do we do about suburbia?

The challenge for this competition, held by the Toronto Region Conservation Authority and the Design Exchange in Toronto, was to create a prototype for sustainable, affordable and viable housing specifically targeted at the mass-production housing market. The design had to appeal to home-builders and –buyers alike.

The solution, Building Blocks Homes, is a modular design. Modular blocks combine to form different housing typologies – detached, semi-detached, row- and stacked townhouses – resulting in neighbourhood diversity both of built form and price point. Modules combine to create two- to seven-bedroom homes.

The 24” framing grid adapts to stick construction, SIPs panels or a factory build, making the design accessible to all builders. Adaptable spaces increase home ownership longevity: a granny suite, adaptable garage and adaptable handicap-accessible bedroom/study add to the modular options. Renovation-ready attics and basements increase the pool of potential buyers.

The two completed houses have exceeded the environmental requirements of the competition and been certified LEED platinum, the highest-possible rating in the LEED green-building rating system.

Made with bleeding edge design, multi-stakeholder coordination and hands-on construction