"Pacheco, who heads up architecture firm UMA, just launched the Paperhouses, a platform that’s looking to bring high-quality open source architecture to the masses. For its initial launch, Pacheco rounded up 12 well-known architects from around the world to contribute a house blueprint that the public can access for free. The whole process is simple: Users choose a house, download the files and then they can can get started on making that home a reality. If you’re the handy type, you can build it yourself. But Paperhouses also will guide you to a network of local providers who can help you with the construction process for a negotiated syndicated price (all fully-built houses come in under $300,000). “Essentially, we’re making a process that’s generally very long, scary, expensive and complicated something where professionals can help so you can actually enjoy the process,” she says."
From architect’s point of view- what a load of c***.
I mean, not the idea of free, nicely designed houses, but the whole “download and build” thing. It will never work this way, no matter how much anyone wishes. To cut out a designer is virtually impossible from the process. The designer/ architect/ however thy’re called isn’t there to get money for nothing, you know. They are there to mediate between investor’s ideas (often ridiculous), their budget and needs, actual requirements of the site (climate, ground, landscape, whatever there is), local building codes and whole lot bullshit of legalise that’s needed for actual permission. The designers are there to help investors to make the sailing as smooth as it can be, not the opposite and if you want a good design, you have to pay for it - you don’t pay for nothing, you pay for knowledge, experience and hard work. You are paying for the product that is perfectly CUT to your needs given the circumstances (mentioned legalise).
I have yet to see a pre-designed building, like those houses, that is built as it was designed. There are always some changes that still require an architect or constructor. Moving walls, adapting to local site, ground specifics, climate. Can you swear you know how to adapt Californian design to properly insulate for Russian Kamchatka climate? This is where the architect comes in, does it and makes sure you don’t over pay for overdone construction that could withstand lots of snow, when you build a house in Florida. The price you are paying for a design often is compensated in how less you pay for not overdone construction in pre-designed house.
I like those designs, but the philosophy they are trying to sell with them is utter PR bull.
Remember kids: well designed building won’t fit anywhere else but the place it was intended to be. The rest is just a noise.