Progress Report

On January 29th, the Design and Construction Group presented a slideshow documenting the process and designs that been developed at that point. This page will go over the key points of the presentation, including slides, pictures, and feedback from the presentation. The following lists the seperate sections of the presentation (in that order). The presentation was divided into the following sections.

  1. Integration with Other Groups
  2. Our process
  3. Case Studies
  4. Discussion of Prototypes
  5. Major Design Decisions of Current Model
  6. Next Steps
  7. To-Scale Walkthrough
  8. Class discussion
To view the presentation slides, click here. Feedback of the presentation can be found in Jan29Feedback.

1. Integration with Other Groups

This section talked about how our group interacted with the existing groups at the time. The other groups sent information to us. The D&C group's role was mostly gathering this information and applying it to the design. We rarely made desicions that impacted other groups (for example, what models we would use to create prototypes), but the lists below describe some of the information we recieved from other groups to help decide our internal constraints and designs:

Community Spaces:

  • Height restrictions for the solution

  • Where and how we will hookup to electricity and other utilities (such as plumbing)

  • Will be finding funds, but we appreciate if you could tackle on other things as well (unless you join our group)

We also requested for the Community Spaces group to begin actively searching for funds to create what the final deliverable was going to be. This was later rejected when we decided what the format of the final deliverable was going to be.


  • The need to maximize open, customizable space

  • Creating a conventional house

  • No sharp edges/corners in the solution (to keep the residents safe)

  • Kitchen Requirements - Inclusion of a sink, hot plate, possibly microwave, no oven, cabinets

  • Washroom Requirements - Inclusion of a second sink, bathing area, toilet, mirror

  • The need for electricity to be on grid

  • A need for windows with blinds

  • Requirements for a circuit board

  • The building code needs to follow regular housing regulations

  • The need for a 4’ foundation and frost shield

2. Our Process

This section showcased how we came up with our final designs. After case studies, we went through a circular process of drawing out ideas, transferrign them onto a computer for accuracy, and then create a model to get a sense of the space. This iterated three times before we decided the "final models" (which were the latest versions of the solution's interior design at the time). More detailed discussions and images about the process can be found below, and on the presentation slides.

3. Case Studies

Here, we discussed the case studies and prior research amde before beginning our prototypes. The case studies were an ongoing process, and the research for it can be found here.

4. Discussion of Prototypes

Generation One Prototypes

This generation focused on idea generation and rapid iterations. We had a few case studies, but we focused on creating a variety of solutions, rather than looking for one best solution. We came up with multiple models on paper, and then recreated them on Google SketchUp to get an idea of the space. You can see the drawings and models developed on slides 6 and 7 of the presentation. In this generation, we found that Google SketchUp was easy to manipulate for hte group and was a convenient and accurate way to create a (limited) sense of space. We also became familiar with how to create to-scale schematics when designing these solutions.

Generation Two Prototypes

The second generation of prototypes focused on exploring the "relative proportions" of various features of the solution, and converging aspects of the first generation designs we liked. Images of the sketches and Gooel sketchups can be found on slide 8 of the presentation. We repeated the process from the previous Generation because our expectations of the final deliverable changed. We started with more sketches via whiteboard, and then converted the designs we liked best into SketchUp models. During our discussion of the models, we decided that it would be beneficial to have a physical model that we could touch and hold in our hands, so we started building the models with legos. Development of these lego models ended up being a failure, because they were too small and not appropriate for an accurately-scaled model.

However, we were still able to take away some valuable ideas from this generation of models. With the sketchups, we were able to learn how to work around specific space constraints (for example, we had to learn hwo to deal with 7'9" of interior space, rather than a clean 8'), and became familiar with how it impacts the design of our solution. We also learned that it is more efficient for the plumbing to stay as close together as possible, so plumbing only has to be installed in one area. This generation of prototypes also opened up new questions about our designs. For example, we began questioning how much space can possibly be customizeable in the available space in a shipping container and how diverse we can make our layouts to give options to our users. We also began questioning the setup of utilities, and what the minimum space it takes to move comfortably in a space.

Generation Three Prototype

In our third generation, we decided to try to create another physical model to get an idea of the physical space. We created two scaled models out of foam core (slide 9 of the presentation) that was durable and flexible. They were more successful than the lego models because they were modular, and parts of the models could be moved around easily. It was also easier to scale because we could measure and cut the proper dimensions of the units. With these models, we were able to identify the feasibility of the bathrooms and issues about space issues in the hallway.

5. Major Decisions of Current Model

The model that was the most current were the models made out of foam core. The main difference between these two models were the size/placement of the bathrooms and kitchens (slide 9). Some of the major design decisions for these models were:

  • Keeping all of the residential plumbing in one location, easily accessible
  • Maximizing the amount of customizeable space for the users
  • Including a sink in the bathroom and kitchen
  • Using dimensions to accomodate a shipping container (TWC's preference)
  • Maintaining space for different bathing areas (showers, bathtubs, etc.)

6. Next Steps

The fuure plans of the group were very specific at the time. Although the group disbanded shortly afterwards, the Interior and Exterior continued to carry out some version of these next steps. The future plans of the Design and Construction group were as follows:

  • Full-scale walkthrough of the two designs, followed by a class discussion

  • Make individual versions of the houses for each user from the User Access group’s presentation (to see how our solution can be diversified)

  • Speak with professionals about how we can connect the module houses to the plumbing/electricity with the house (shared septic tank?)

  • Continue our case studies

  • Focus on finer details, including the type and prices of various storage methods in the bathroom and kitchen (keeping cabinets in the kitchen, for example)

7. Full-Scale Walkthrough

Prior to the presentation, a to-scale walkthrough of the two designs were created. Peers and professors were welcomed to go through the designs, with a class discussion following shortly afterwards. Some photos from the walkthrough can be found in the attachments at the bottom of the page. The students were also asked to fill out a feedback form, which can be found at Jan29Feedback.

8. Class Discussion

There was a strong focus on re-evaluating curent final devlierables. At the time, the plan was to have a working prototype of the housing solution. Given the time, money, and manpower constraints, the deliverable was not feasible. There was a class discussion about what the form of this deliverable would be, and after a multi-lecture discussion it was decided that the final deliverable would be 1) A TWiki documenting the designing process and decisions made at various points of the term 2) A scaled, high-fidelity model of the housing solution for TWC 3) A comment for TWC to submit to the city for changing the permissions and zone for the possible location for the pilot of this solution.

-- Main.s4pearce - 2015-03-21

Topic attachments
I Attachment History Action Size Date Who Comment
JPEGjpg 1.jpg r1 manage 29.0 K 2015-03-24 - 03:06 UnknownUser Photos showcasing the full-scale walkthrough during the January 29th presentation for the Design and Construction Group
JPEGjpg 2.jpg r1 manage 30.6 K 2015-03-24 - 03:06 UnknownUser Photos showcasing the full-scale walkthrough during the January 29th presentation for the Design and Construction Group
JPEGjpg 2015-02-03_10.53.09.jpg r1 manage 2561.2 K 2015-03-24 - 03:06 UnknownUser Photos showcasing the full-scale walkthrough during the January 29th presentation for the Design and Construction Group
JPEGjpg 2015-02-03_10.53.22.jpg r1 manage 2961.7 K 2015-03-24 - 03:06 UnknownUser Photos showcasing the full-scale walkthrough during the January 29th presentation for the Design and Construction Group
JPEGjpg 2015-02-03_11.24.52.jpg r1 manage 2576.4 K 2015-03-24 - 03:06 UnknownUser Photos showcasing the full-scale walkthrough during the January 29th presentation for the Design and Construction Group
PDFpdf Copy_of_January_29_Presentation.pdf r1 manage 2351.1 K 2015-03-21 - 04:34 UnknownUser  
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Topic revision: r5 - 2015-03-24 - s4pearce
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