Building Blocks for Better Housing
Erin Green posted on December 07, 2015 |

Talk about a room with a view.

The Tetris House design combines three unique
The Tetris House design combines three unique "apartments" into a single structure. (Image courtesy of Universe Architecture.)

This is the Tetris House: a modular housing design that loves to show off its good side.

Lucky for it, every side is a good side when you have floor-to-ceiling panoramic views that cover nearly every outside wall.


A Modern House from a Classic Game

As you may have guessed, the puzzle video game Tetris is the inspiration for this modern modular housing design.

Diagram illustrating the three floors of each unit and how they interlock to create the Tetris House structure. (Image courtesy of Universe Architecture.)

Diagram illustrating the three floors of each unit and how they interlock to create the Tetris House structure. (Image courtesy of Universe Architecture.)

“The entire Tetris House structure consists of stiff ‘building blocks,’” said Janjaap Ruijssenaars, founder of the house’s designer Universe Architecture.

The modules come in three established formats, each with three rectangular “rooms” stacked on top of one another. These three modules can then be pieced together, just like the game, into an interlocking triplex design.

Assembled structures can also be personalized to meet the homeowners’ needs. Details like balconies, terraces and shutters can easily be added.


Getting Ready for the World Stage

The Tetris House design was recently approved for mass production on an international scale—meaning that it could be showing up in a neighborhood near you.

The design was originally created by Universe Architecture using AutoCAD, SketchUp and 3ds. According to Ruijssenaars, the designs will most likely be adapted for building information modeling.

BIM software offerings like SCIA Engineer have been updating lately to include international building codes. BIM adoption for this project will help ensure that modules created for or in other countries will meet the appropriate requirements.


Interiors can be adapted to suit the occupants' lifestyles. (Image courtesy of Universe Architecture.)

Interiors can be adapted to suit the occupants' lifestyles. (Image courtesy of Universe Architecture.)

What This Means for Affordable Housing

The entire Tetris House structure is constructed of concrete and steel with walls of glass windows. In countries like the United States, these are readily available and affordable materials.

This approach could provide a comfortable and convenient housing option for rapidly expanding populations. As a bonus, the concept is just plain fun!

To learn more about the Tetris House system, check out the website.

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