tengbom architects design a smart student flat
tengbom architects design a smart student flat
sep 06, 2013

tengbom architects design a smart student flat

tengbom architects design a smart student flat
photo by bertil hertzberg




affordable housing for students on a budget is often hard to come by. tengbom architects have proposed a 10 sqm student unit in response–accessible, environmentally friendly, and smart in its design and material choices. in developing the compact space, the swedish firm worked with members of its target group, university of lund students, to conceive a sleeping-loft, kitchen, bathroom and small garden with a patio within 10 sqm, reducing the current requirements of 25 sqm by 60% through legal consent, but is still comfortable for its inhabitants.


collaborating with martinsons and real estate company AF bostäder, the ‘smart student unit’ is constructed from cross laminated locally sourced wood, and features an efficient layout within the tight quarters, reducing the typical average rent by 50%, as well as the ecological impact and carbon footprints of building it.




tengbom architects design a smart student flat
the general living space features a kitchen, fold down table and built in shelving and storage
photo by bertil hertzberg




by exhibiting this well planned and sustainable student unit we want to challenge the conventional views and show new ways of thinking. what is ‘good’ living? what materials can we use? to meet the future in a sustainable way we must be innovative in all aspects and have the courage to break new ground,’ says linda camara at tengbom architects.


the ‘smart student unit’ is on show at virserum art museum until december 8th, 2013, and in 2014, 22 of the flats will be realized for students to rent.




tengbom architects design a smart student flat
the kitchen is located at the entrance of the unit
photo by bertil hertzberg



tengbom architects design a smart student flat
views of the lofted living space
photo by bertil hertzberg



tengbom architects design a smart student flat
bird’s-eye view into the main living area
photo by bertil hertzberg



tengbom architects design a smart student flat
photo by bertil hertzberg



tengbom architects design a smart student flat
the unit measures a mere 10 sqm
photo by bertil hertzberg


tengbom architects design a smart student flat


  • Go green ?

    JogjaSleepingBag.com says:
  • Nice idea, however how much is too much plywood? This could have been made from lighter, sustainable, reused materials and finishes.

    pg says:
  • Interesting, but it seems a bit material ‘heavy’ to me. Not a problem here because I’m claustrophobic and don’t like pooping where I eat and sleep…

    George Gekas says:
  • Super!

    Vitaliy says:
  • Superb. This is de minimus thinking that can help refine/expand spaces which much less stringent space constraints. My hat is off to the architects.

    Mac McDougal says:
  • Shades of RV interior.

    nelsondreyes architect says:
  • Great idea and design! Too bad for the wasted surface area within those walls… or is it also a reversed bomb shelter for exploding students during exam week? ; )

    Pule says:
  • I totes want one. 😀 It just looks so simple. 🙂

    AffordableLiving says:
  • I really love the feel of wood! can’t resist it!

    TONGMU says:
  • Could a small solar panel be attached to the top to make it energy self sufficient ?

    Dorothy says:
  • Seems like a lot of rounded edges, which precludes using existing affordable things like doors, windows.

    Michael Crumpton says:
  • Needs a better roofing solution – how about sedum?

    SIG Design and Technology says:
  • I would have used cork instead of the 2X’s sandwiched between the 1X’s for a lighter build and also would have used a solar panel for power.

    Jack says:
  • Nice, clean lines. Very livable for tiny living with one exception: the windows do not open. Another would be a question if there is a shower in the bathroom. Otherwise very cool.

    LouAnn Gurske says:
  • Beautiful! … if a bit small — but I guess that’s the idea. Love the wood.

    elizabeth says:
  • not sure where you would store clothes or food

    amy says:
  • This would have been wonderful to have done in plastics.
    It is lovely though.

    Ron Smith says:
  • this seems like a great little house for one or two people, small living means easy clean up and less bills, i have to say its lacking solar panels and a solar water heater. and a real stove and sink lol. i think ill construct a small version of this, and one last thing why it it that where the windows are there is a foot of wood? is it all wood or is there insalation in it… sorry for the spelling.

    the blue admiral says:
  • So I take it this is for stereotypical asian exchange students?

    It would be unworkable for anybody taller than about 5’6″ or waist bigger than 25″

    Brian Bradford says:
  • seems completely inspired by Charles Correa’s Tube Housing project of the 1960s….

    sheerja iyer says:
  • wonderful
    it:s a very good idea!

    sara says:
  • Interesting to read the comments here! We drew this unit as part of a wood exhibition in collaboration with a manufacturer of cross laminated wood (therefor the “material heaviness”). It is a mockup of an apartment that will be realized as part of a student housing area so you must imagine the unit as part of a multiapartmenthouse (two of the walls will be facing other apartments). You’d be surprised how spacious it actually feels inside. The height, the light coming from many directions and the organic shapes contribute.

    If you are interested in more information don’t hesitate to contact Tengbom Architects!

    Lina Rengstedt says:
  • I have a question. Does it have outlets? Like, for electricity? Or is it solar?

    K says:
  • I smoke, so I’m screwed?

    Smeagol says:
  • almost a space module!! 😉 but really comfy if you compare to live in a sailing boat

    PAULO says:
  • I can’t see why people like this design. The stairs are unsafe with no guardrail and way too narrow, stairs are not good bookshelves either. the sleeping loft doesn’t even have a quarter wall for fall prevention, who wants to take everything off the sill and table just to shutter a window? Are there hidden drawers in the counter? I see very little storage for anything like silverware, etc. A smart student would stay away from this thing! It’ll be ‘cool’ for about a month, then they will be begging for something designed better!

    JayG says:
  • How would one shower? There is no shower in this unit… seems necessary for it to be more than a shed.

    Marcel says:
  • nice planning however you have not mentioned project cost to know whether it is economically worth.

    prathith shetty says:
  • I am in love with this space. The fact that there’s not a lot of space, for me, would be a good thing. It would be a nice challenge to eliminate unnecessary clutter and things that I don’t actually use. Agreed, it’s not for everyone, but for a student who is looking for a place to eat, sleep, and study, it is more than doable. The fact that it’s small would push me step outside more, which I think is a good thing. I’d love to be in one of these while it rains, how cozy! I’m not sure if this unit has shower, but the bathroom could easily be redesigned to have a Korean-style shower: A hand-held shower head and a drain in the bathroom floor.

    Kellie Robinson says:
  • As to the stair railings, this is a very American building code to protect us from ourselves. Euro codes seem to indicate a degree of responsibility for your own decisions i.e. if you have kids, disabled, elderly you put in the safety features required. These are for agile college students.

    Claire Felong says:
  • I’m *GUESSING*… that the thing isn’t solid. You can see around the window (pic with the plant) where there’s an internal “ring”, which could hide the hollow core. As pointed out that’s a boatload of wood if it’s as it appears. It would be better with a polyester/cellulose fill.. since fire isn’t a concern anyway, right? Haha. Nice wooden sink basin. I get that it’s a concept but come on. If it is solid wood, at least it could be dropped off a truck and rolled into position, and hopefully only one of these atrocities is ever produced.

    will psillas says:
  • i would say this would be a very nice benny for like a person that has a lot of property and would like to use these as little 1 person apartment.. one thing I do notice is this.. You can always make it your own..

    Shane Hamrick says:
  • No appliances or shower would make this miserable living quarters after a time. But as a guest module or a study retreat in one’s own backyard it has interest.

    JDJ says:

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