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UK’s First Amphibious House – A Floating Pontoon

Architects of UK have been trying to make floating pontoon house for a long time. Now, for the first time in the UK, Baca Architects have got the full planning permission to build a residential home on the bank of the River Thames in Buckinghamshire. This will be the first floating pontoon house in the UK. When there will be flood, the house will not go under water, rather it will float on the water and remain safe.


Many British architects thought, building such homes could be a high risk in flood-prone zones. But, Baca Architects is the first one who have designed UK’s first ever ‘amphibious’ house. Their technology is pretty impressive. They present a major breakthrough for British architects. Their proposed 225 sq m (2421 sq ft) modern home will replace the current dilapidated bungalow. This home will be placed 10 meters (32.8 ft) away from the river’s edge.

Richard Coutts, director of Baca Architects said, “In an extreme flood, a 1 in 100 year event, the house can rise over 2.5 meters (8.2 feet). Options for the site included either a floating or an elevated property. An elevated building would be set high enough to avoid an extreme flood but has the disadvantage of being almost a storey away from the garden. An amphibious house solves these issues by allowing occupants to enjoy their garden and only rising to avoid floods when necessary.”

The technological part of this amphibious house is awesome. Normally, the amphibious house will keep standing on the ground just like fixed foundations as every building has. But during a flood, the entire building will rise up in its dock and float constantly to that place. It will be buoying on the flood water. Special care have been taken of the doc which is comprised of walls and base slab. While the house will be floating, it’s doc will become wet due to flood water. As the dock fills with flood water, the house rises accordingly. 4 permanent dolphins (vertical posts) are attached close to the sidewalls in order to prevent the house from floating away.

The home is designed with extreme precautions, high infrastructure and amazing view. This highly-insulated and low energy building features water saving and energy saving devices, large windows, pitched roofs and a chimney to complement the irregular roof-line of neighbouring homes. The home faces towards south and offers panoramic views towards the river. The garden with terraces can give a danger signal as it is set at different level of water. Building such amphibious home at present is going to cost 20%-25% more than a similar sized non-amphibious house.

The purpose of making such floating house by Baca Architects is to aware people and let the people know to be better prepared for flooding and climate change. Hope so, UK people will appreciate this and will be beneficial in future.

Source : Gizmag, Life-Project

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