Designed by Andreas Claus Schnetzer and Gregor Pils, The Palleten Haus (Pallet House) went viral ever since it stole the show at the GAUDI competition for minimal house back in 2008. The home has been displayed across Europe and won a few awards also.
I recently came across it myself and was fascinated at the simplicity of the structure as well as the relative ease with which it may be built. This is not the first home made from pallets, I’ve seen, but it is one of the best thus far. The idea in itself is quite sensible as pallets are readily available globally. Anywhere goods are shipped to, you’ll find an exhaustive supply of these durable, recyclable, modular materials.
For the Palleten Haus, two layers of pallets serve as the home’s walls, ceiling, and as a sunscreen to shade the structure and allow for ventilation with structural support, insulation, conduits and plumbing sandwiched between those two layers of pallets. Pallet walls are also used for partitioning within the home. Insulation for the ‘haus’ could be anything that is readily available. Spray foam, Iso Boards, heck maybe even old denim, but I fear that would be quite the task. Windows are installed on the sides, while the two ends of the rectangular structure have glass fronts with a sliding glass door. The home is designed to have a low heating and cooling demand, and rainwater is collected from the roof to flush the toilets. In total, about 800 pallets were used to build the 60 sq meter house, at a cost of €8 (N 1800 in today’s rates) per pallet at the time.
The Palleten Haus was originally designed to meet the needs for housing in developing nations who do not have access to affordable building materials. To this end, the designers are now in South Africa working on an affordable prototype as part of a social housing project. They are teaching local people how to construct the home utilizing local materials, including straw, which will be used for insulation.
They expect to build an 80 sq meter home for about $10,000 (roughly N2 million) in 10 days, which works out to $11/ sq foot (about N220). Affordable, efficient, and easily replicated worldwide, We’ll keep you posted.