Dutch firm Studio OBA facilitates the carving-up of assets when a relationship ends with a house that divides down the middle.
Architectural design is increasingly flexible and modular to reflect the fast-paced, mobile nature of our societies. We’ve seen housing design which reflects niche communities and tetris-style blocks which can be reconfigured for customizable homes. Impermanence is also expressed in falling marriage rates and high divorce rates around the world. Different services have sprung up to address this market with divorce mini-breaks, platforms for separated parents managing child support and even gift cards for low-cost divorces. Now, a Dutch architectural firm has brought these two social trends together and created a modular house that can physically separate when a couple does.
Studio OBA‘s design is called the prenuptial house. The components are made from wood and carbon fibre, prefabricated independently of each other and slotted together in a Tetris-like formation to form one unit. Omar Kabiri, who approached Studio OBA with the design idea, explains, “With the increasing number of divorces each year, our concept is – regrettably – becoming more and more relevant. I especially like the fact that we can stabilize the home front during an otherwise very hectic time.” In keeping with its Amsterdam origins, the house will also float to cater for those divorcees that want to try canal living.
Studio OBA is looking at investment and plans to start taking orders for Prenuptial Housing in early 2017. Could houses that separate be useful in other scenarios, such as to facilitate co-purchasing by friends?