Prefabricated House Design

Prefabricated house have done a lot to earn their reputation for being cheap and ugly, and indeed, the prevailing vision of prefab--endless rows of cookie cutter structures built with cheap materials and substandard construction methods--is, unfortunately, fairly accurate. But now and throughout prefab's history, there have been many exceptions to the rule. Ground-breaking proposals from architects and designers such as Le Corbusier, Walter Gropius, Jean Prouve, Albert Frey, Buckminster Fuller, Sir Richard Rogers, Archigram, Kisho Kurokawa, and Philippe Starck, have emerged since Sears, Roebuck & Co. first marketed their Houses by Mail to the general public in 1908.

As an architecture student now a working as a builder, I couldnt help but being drawn into this book. Organized into 4 sections: History, Production, Custom, Concept, with a wide array of photographs, plans and renderings cleanly presented. The history section does a great job of bringing any curious reader interested in this subject up to speed, creating a great departure point for the 30 or so contemporary projects that follow it. This book is well researched and really gets you excited about the potential of prefab by presenting a wide range of projects in the U.S. and Internationally, exploring a wide range of techniques / systems being developed today. The future of housing looks bright with prefab!

Prefab examines the fascinating history of prefabricated housing over the last century to reveal a wealth of practical and attractive alternatives to the status quo. Prefab's primary focus is the work of more than twenty-five contemporary architects and designers who are exploring the myriad possibilities that prefabrication offers for housing for the future. From the poetic construction of Shigeru Ban to the industrial minimalism of KFN's portable structures, from the fantastical digitized aluminum prototypes of Greg Lynn to the stylish functionality of IKEA's prefab apartments, Prefab presents a series of innovative homes and concepts that boldly demonstrates how far this much maligned building technique has come, and how fat it can go. In doing so, Prefab endeavors to inspire a change in the way people think of housing and the way the architects, builders, developers, and financial institutions approach it--and ultimately, the way individuals live in it.

Allison Arieff

IN PREFAB GREEN, architect Michelle Kaufmann shares her vision of creating thoughtful, sustainable design for everyone. Her firm, Michelle Kaufmann Designs, blends sustainable home layouts, eco-friendly materials, and low-energy options to create a "prepackaged" green solution to home design. Kaufmann tells about five eco-principles that are present in every design her firm creates-smart design, eco-materials, energy efficiency, water conservation, and healthy environment-and how each work together to create homes that make a difference.

Michelle Kaufmann founded Michelle Kaufmann Designs in 2002. Michelle's work is widely published and her homes have been showcased in a number of museums including the National Building Museum, the Vancouver Art Center, MOCA in Los Angeles, and Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry. Michelle lives in Marin County, California.

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