Thursday, December 16, 2010


This ovoid abode is the talk of the blogs this month, but I have tried to bring you the photos and information in a nutshell - or an eggshell, as it were...

Chinese architect Dai Haifei, 24, designed and built a tiny, eco-friendly living space after participating in a conceptual project called "City's Egg" at the 2010 Shanghai Biennale Exhibition. "I was impressed by the green-notion of building a house like that, especially in cities like Beijing where rental price for a fresh graduate is a huge burden," he says. His creation is an egg-house measuring 2m high and 6m in area that took him 2 months to put together. He constructed it in his hometown in southeast Hunan, then paid to have it shipped the 1,700km to Beijing. It is built on a bamboo frame, insulated with wood chips, and layered with stitched bags filled with sawdust and grass seeds. The grass will eventually cover the entire structure, which is powered by a solar panel and batteries and can be moved on its 2 wheels. The amenities are spartan, but include a bed, a bookshelf, a night table, a lamp, a skylight, and a small sink and water tank. Missing are a kitchen (he eats out), a toilet (he uses public facilities) and a shower (he has joined a gym, where he also uses the pool and the sauna). Living in the egg has saved Dai both time and money. On the 1st count, he lives just a minute's walk from the architectural firm where he often works until midnight, so he can avoid a frustrating commute. On the 2nd count, he built the egg using only 6,400 yuan ($960) worth of materials. Compare this to 19,548 yuan ($ 2,940) a meter to buy an average home in Beijing, or 900 yuan ($135) a month to rent a small room. The egg is waterproof, but not warm, and served Dai for only 2 months - with speculation that the international media attention brought an end to his "free lifestyle." Early this month, the Haidian District Urban Management Division cited the egg as "unauthorized construction," since it was a roadside structure without a building permit, and hauled it away.

No comments:

Post a Comment

You may add your comments here.