Livingboard, a project by CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati to improve housing conditions in India
International design practice CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati is working with Indian non-profit organization WeRise to develop Livingboard, the prototype of a portable “motherboard system” to improve housing conditions in rural parts of India.
Livingboard encourages an open-source approach to design, allowing people to build their own dwellings on top of a prefabricated core.
The project revolves around the idea that housing should not be a static unit that is packaged and handed over to people, but rather should be conceived of as an ongoing project wherein the residents are co-creators. The first pilot is currently under study for development in the Indian state of Karnataka, near Bangalore.
Livingboard is a flexible “core” system to support the development of housing initiatives in any rural area of the world. This core must be positioned horizontally, constituting the floor of a 12-square meter room (3 x 4 m). It can provide, depending on the geography and infrastructure of the region in question, water storage and distribution, water treatment through filtration, waste management, heating, batteries to accumulate PVgenerated electricity and wi-fi connectivity. Also, from a structural point of view, it provides seismic isolation by separating the building’s superstructure from the substructure.
As Livingboard is compatible with different house designs, locals can build their homes on top of it, selecting from the motherboard’s basic functions and deciding on the housing structure to go around it in accordance with their needs and desires. Livingboard aims to become the focal point of domestic space, around which the house’s inhabitants can gather, cook, wash and read.
A project by CRA-Carlo Ratti Associati for WeRise
CRA team: Carlo Ratti, Giovanni de Niederhausern, Saverio Panata, Emma Greer (Project Manager), Chiara Morandini (Project Lead), Anna Morani.
Renderings by CRA graphic team: Gary di Silvio, Gianluca Zimbardi, Pasquale Milieri
Images courtesy of CRA – Carlo Ratti Associati
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