How the combination of profile and linear technology can open up a whole new ambience.
The increasing mobility of young employees, a significant growth in the number of single-person households and the success of the sharing economy, which operates under the motto “sharing, not owning”, are all factors that are shaping the current real estate market. Many people also want to live in a central location and the actual size of their home is less important to them – with financial factors also influencing their priorities. What is the best way for the real estate sector to respond to these trends? The apartment complex known as “The Jay”, in Adliswil, a suburb of Zurich, Switzerland, is already showing how it could work. In this converted office building, 41 of the 96 apartments have been fitted with the MOVEment modular room concept from MOVEment Systems AG. The individual modules can be moved at the touch of a button, meaning all your creature comforts can be fitted into a smaller space. The aluminium profile technology of the item MB Building Kit System provides the system with stability.
Modularity and flexibility all the way
It is a few years now since MOVEment Systems AG, a sister company of Halter AG, one of Switzerland’s leading building and real estate businesses, came across Austrian architect Angelo Roventa’s concept of “elastic living”, which uses movable fixtures, fittings and furniture. “The basic idea is as simple as it is practical. Users manage the space between their cupboard, bed and wall,” explains Alex Valsecchi, Managing Director of MOVEment Systems AG. This modular room concept was developed into a product dubbed “MOVEment”, which incorporates, alongside other aspects, automation in the form of linear technology. First, a virtual model was created that potential investors could view with the help of VR glasses.
Ultimately, an investor was found who was very keen to equip some of the flats in a converted office building with these systems. This was the start of the modular room concept in “The Jay”. First, three different prototypes were developed – including one based on modular profile technology from item. “In choosing item, we were looking at the most future-proof solution, and then we built a prototype that we had certified,” says Valsecchi. The next step was to quickly develop and realize this model, which we managed to do within a year. In particular, it was the straightforward, flexible fasteners of the item profiles that won out, as they ensured rapid construction of the frame structures.
Urban living style in “The Jay” thanks to a modular room system
So how exactly does this modular room system work? The individual modules can be moved at the touch of a button. In the more comprehensive “Senior” model, for example, these are the bed, cupboard and office modules. Depending on the time of day, the modules that are not currently needed can be moved to the side, freeing up more space. This is done using an operating panel, on which both pre-set module positions and customised positions can be defined. The result is optimum usage of the space in the apartment. Since the apartments in “The Jay” are furnished, and there are various designs to choose from, this also takes care of one of the most stressful aspects of moving home.
In a survey of the tenants, the feedback was exceptionally positive. It showed that the concept perfectly served the needs of the target groups. The tenants include many young professionals, single people and employees who live elsewhere in Switzerland or the surrounding countries with their families at the weekend. An innovative apartment in a suburb of Zurich – a business hub where companies such as Google have offices – is certainly ‘hot property’ to tenants like these. The modular room concept enables the them to concentrate on the important things in life while living in comfort in “The Jay”. There is also communal space on the roof for relaxed chats in the evening – also quite in keeping with the “sharing” philosophy.
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