'pile up' house concept by hans zwimpfer
'pile up' house concept by hans zwimpfer 'pile up' house concept by hans zwimpfer
oct 21, 2008

'pile up' house concept by hans zwimpfer

swiss architect hans zwimpfer has patented his building design ‘pile up’ in europe and the united states. while most buildings don’t qualify for patent status, ‘pile up’ is more of a building system than an object. the concept takes the comfort and experience of a residential home and merges it with the density of urban living by piling homes together. the idea is essentially like the game ‘tetris’, stacking bricks together into a compact form. each home is two has a part that touches the ground, providing access to outdoor space. the rest of the home is tacked in between others and features an open concept with plenty of windows and balconies. the interiors are kept open and without load-bearing walls to allow residents to customize their space to their needs over time. the idea is said to cost about the same as a standard apartment building and projects are already underway in europe and africa.



‘housing stack’ at the new york times

  • patented ? well it’s exactly the same module and same idea that Le Corbusier used in La cité Radieuse in Marseille back in … 1952 !

    capoo says:
  • well … also as seen by sejima in Gifu in … 1998 🙂

    hawaiikat says:
  • well, we all know that this architect didn’t “invent” this concept… But he was clever enough to patent it!

    alxtraf says:
  • “clever enough to patent it!”…. The architect really has to be full of himself or absolutely ignorant to think that he invented something that has already been done so many times… You could find this type of project done by a student in any university around the world!!! and you think he is smart?

    East coast says:

have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.
all comments are reviewed for the purposes of moderation before publishing.

comments policy
designboom's comment policy guidelines
generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

- please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
- please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
- please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
- please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
- please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
(there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
the best 100-200 entries too.)

a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

architecture news

keep up with our daily and weekly stories
489,282 subscribers
- see sample
- see sample