Max Boerman Max Boerman Architectural Designer

As a response to land scarcity, climate change, the decreasing stock of fossil fuels, and the paving of natural soil that results in more flooding when it rains, this project for my graduation studio at Delft University of Technology proposes to extend cities to the water in urban areas with a modular and self-sustaining system. The focus was to create a beautiful place on the water where people want to live, that is completely self-sustaining and designed in such a way that it can respond to future scenarios and applied to multiple locations. The case study for my graduation project is located between Nemo and the Marine terrain in Amsterdam. The plot is created by the shore on the east, and a boat route on the west. 

The backbone of the project is a jetty connected to land. This jetty contains various infrastructure and the routing. To this "backbone", elements can be "plugged-in", such as houses and floating, public modules. The houses are placed on one side of the jetty, and the public modules on the opposite. This way, the private side of the houses can always be oriented towards the sun. Furthermore, by placing the houses on one side of the jetty, a relation to the water is created. 

The system consists of modules with the length and width of shipping containers, so they can be transported by (cargo) ship. The modular frames are made of Accoya wood, a sustainable material with great thermal insulation values. The construction is integrated in the facade, and the joints are made of steel to connect the elements together, which are placed between the wooden beams so a thermal-bridge is prevented. People can design and configure their own house and change or extend it in the future. 

The houses are self-sustaining regarding water and energy. Rainwater is harvested via roof modules, and filtered to be used in household activities. Wastewater is filtered in the public space and given back to the surrounding water. Solar panels on the roof provide the houses of enough energy in the full-electric system, to be (in theory) self-sustaining all year round.