Is This Transforming Micro-Flat The Future Of Urban Housing?

Michelle and Andy had big plans for their flat in the Central district of Hong Kong. Michelle wanted a full kitchen and a bathtub; Andy wanted a home cinema and a gym. The problem? The space was 309 square feet, total. Which meant that they would need to get creative, or they would need to sacrifice some of those dream features.

Rather than start compromising on their goals, the couple teamed up with the architecture firm LAAB, who actually managed to make their small-space dreams come true, through consideration of what they call the 4th dimension—time.

“We began considering time as a factor, eventually designing the space around a ‘Form Follows Time’ philosophy, which means that spaces open and close depending on the purposes needed at that particular time,” LAAB wrote of the project on their website. The best demonstration of this philosophy is Michelle’s full bathtub: it can also be used as seating for Andy’s cinema space or as a private guest bedroom.

It gets better: just watch the summary video, and you’ll see Andy and Michelle doing all sorts of unbelievable pulling, pushing, and transforming. LAAB even took into consideration the couple’s three cats, designing catwalks and ladders for them.

This blueprint of the space from above gives a good picture of the flat as a whole.

Is the transforming flat a glimpse into the future of living spaces around the world? With news of pod bedrooms in San Francisco and communal living spaces in New York, it sure seems that society is at least rethinking the idea of massive, impersonal homes.

For their part, Andy and Michelle are thrilled with their space. “The most important thing is how comfortable the apartment is,” they said. “Many of our friends come over and visit our place, and they have never seen such a nice kitchen even though their own apartments are bigger than ours.”