Architecture and design company ArchiBlox is changing the way companies and consumers think about prefabricated, sustainable design with the construction of the Haagen Dazs House project. The moveable design pod, currently on show in Federation Square Melbourne before moving to Sydney, shows how commercial spaces can feel more like home to ease the customer, in this case with an ice cream in hand.
"Archiblox wants to break the perception of cheap transportable homes and instead use these modular buildings to redefine the intersection between residential architecture and retail commercialism," said Archiblox Director Bill McCorkell. "People feel more at ease when they are in their home environment and ice cream similarly is a comfort food, so we tied the both of them together in the design of the Haagen Dazs House."
Archiblox designed a bespoke fit-out using materials with sustainable properties including carbon neutral timber cladding on the exterior and plywood interiors which included intricate paneling, custom booth seating with recycled blackbutt timber planter boxes. Within the space they also activated the ceiling area using produce and ingredients from the Haagen Dazs range. This was also an opportunity to introduce the real and natural essence in the brand and also have vegetation in the space.
ArchiBlox is pushing further into this field with other recent projects including university buildings, daycare centres and retail outlets.
"We see this as a reinvention of the way the retail industry views their point of sale experience. Any company wanting to take their product out into the market space in an inexpensive way and be able to transport it to various locations should consider the prefabrication idea," said McCorkell.
"Prefab is not all about square boxes and conformity towards transport regulations and rules. Prefab is as flexible as your own imagination," McCorkell added.
Archiblox have garnered a spot on Fast Company’s ‘World’s Most Innovative Companies list’ as ‘Third Most Innovative Architectural Business’ for this innovative thinking. Being the only Australian architectural firm to make the list, their contribution to sustainable homes and prefabrication puts the Australian Prefabrication Industry in the international spotlight.
McCorkell hopes that each year this sector grows; prefabrication becomes accepted as a normal method for building procurement.
By Louise Jeckells