Wheelchair-friendly tiny house proves universal design can be cool

January 31, 2017 by  
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In a perfect world, architecture would be accessible for everyone, but sadly, people with disabilities or mobility issues are often limited to the physical barriers found in typical constructions. Vermont-based firm LineSync Architecture wants to change that with a new brand of accessible architecture, starting with their wheelchair-friendly tiny house , the Wheel Pad. https://youtu.be/EzE7irfnCbY The Wheel Pad is a prototype home for those who need more long-term adaptability from a home design . The 200-square-feet residence was designed in consultation with home health nurses, physicians, physical therapists and occupational therapists. Related: This $10k tiny house can be built with a hex key in less than a day The Wheel Pad was designed with a number of features geared to a wide range of needs, such as fixtures installed at lower heights, double swing doors, and a Hoyer lift that slides on a ceiling track to provide mobility assistance . Like most tiny homes, the space is compact, however, large windows give the interior a nice, airy feel. The home is also built on a mobile chassis base , which means it can be parked without a permit in most places around the US, allowing the inhabitants total freedom to travel. According to the architects, the design has a wide range of possible uses, “With Wheel Pad, we will change the way our injured soldiers and civilians come home from rehab. Wheel Pad is “disruptive” in the best sense of the word. It seems everyone has a use for Wheel Pad including: spinal cord injuries, people newly using wheelchairs or prosthetics, elderly veterans and civilians, hospice care, children with disabilities.” + LineSync Architecture Via Treehugger Video via Chibi Moku Photographs by Carolyn Bates

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Wheelchair-friendly tiny house proves universal design can be cool

World’s most powerful wind turbine breaks 24-hour record for energy generation

January 31, 2017 by  
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Anyone who still thinks wind power is just a load of hot air obviously hasn’t been paying attention. Witness the V164 , a prototype wind turbine that Denmark’s MHI Vestas Offshore tested at Østerild over December. With a rated power of 9 megawatts under optimum conditions, the V164 set a new energy-generation record by a single wind turbine by producing a staggering 216,000 kilowatt-hours over a 24-hour period. The V164 is no glorified windmill. Standing nearly 722 feet tall, the V164 boasts with a sweep area of 227,377 square feet—or larger than the London Eye. Its 262-foot-long blades, the equivalent of nine London double-decker buses, weigh 77,160 pounds apiece. The platform is part of MH Vestas Offshore’s “continued commitment to deliver affordable offshore wind power,” Torben Hvid Larsen, the firm’s chief technical officer, said in a statement. Related: The World’s Most Powerful Wind Turbine Has Blades That Are Over 24 Stories Tall “We are committed to delivering turbine technology that is in line with the development of our industry, based on our 20-plus years of offshore experience,” he said. “Reliability remains a key enabler, and our approach to developing our existing platform supports this strategy.” With the new record secured, the prototype is now ready to go to market. Built with the unforgiving North Sea environment in mind, V164 has an operational life span of about 25 years, after which 80 percent of it can be recycled. “We believe that our wind turbine will play an integral part in enabling the offshore industry to continue to drive down the cost of energy,” Larsen added. + MHI Vestas Offshore Via New Atlas

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World’s most powerful wind turbine breaks 24-hour record for energy generation

Space-saving furniture transforms to make the most of a Hong Kong micro-apartment

January 31, 2017 by  
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Hong Kong’s astronomical housing prices and tiny living spaces have made multifunctional furniture a necessity for many of the city’s homes. Local firm Design Eight Five Two maximizes the footprint of one such micro-apartment with the addition of space-saving furniture. The Kowloon Bay apartment, called Flat 27A, was completely redesigned and customized for the owner, a photographer, and his cat. Flat 27A was formerly subdivided into five rooms, two of which were used as bedrooms. Design Eight Five Two knocked down most of the internal walls to create a single bedroom and a large open-plan living area with sliding doors to delineate the private quarters from the communal area. Custom-made hidden storage minimizes clutter and conceals the owner’s extensive library as well as a variety of objects, from camera equipment to a coffee machine. The cat’s bed is even hidden away behind a hole carved in a cabinet of a storage unit. Related: Tiny transforming home in Hong Kong makes 309 square feet feel huge “Flat 27A was an opportunity to bring a kind of subtle magic to our client’s home,” write the architects. “A powerful sense of pleasure and comfort that would set it apart – for its simplicity, ease, and efficiency.” With the removal of the internal walls, the apartment has a more spacious feel and has greater access to natural light . In addition to hidden storage and sliding partitions , the architects added a custom-built dining table that folds out to accommodate ten people. + Design Eight Five Two Via Dezeen Images by Hazel Yuen Fun

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Space-saving furniture transforms to make the most of a Hong Kong micro-apartment

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