The first innovative micro home in the UK has been installed as part of an ambitious bid to tackle homelessness.
The £40,000 temporary prefabricated iKozie home was lowered by crane into its permanent position on St George’s Lane in Worcester on Tuesday as part of a pioneering scheme led by Midlands charity The Homeless Foundation.
It is expected that the first tenant will move into the one-person 186 square-foot property next month and the home will help them make the transition from homelessness and hostels into independent living.
Local homeless agencies will refer potential tenants to live in the home, which will be managed by Spring Housing Association, and they will have to cover the rent and water bills on their property as well as living expenses.
— homeless foundation (@HomelessTHF) August 29, 2017
They will have access to a bedroom that is big enough to fit a double bed as well as a shower room, living area and a kitchen which includes all appliances.
The stylish interior was inspired by luxury yachts and first-class airline suites and it is hoped that the design will prove attractive to a wide variety of people for a multi-use approach to tackling the country’s housing issues.
The iKozie is clad in larch wood and has a corrugated iron roof while tenants will be able to gain access via a side gate and path.
It also complies fully with all planning requirements, building regulations and is extremely energy efficient after gaining an EPC A rating, according to the charity.
The ergonomically-designed micro home was constructed off-site, in conjunction with Stow-based Eastabrook Architects, before being lifted over a two-storey building that is already owned by the charity and placed in the back garden of the property.
The residential road had to be closed while up to 10 workers delicately manoeuvred the module into place but the unique home can be moved at any time.
As well as helping to tackle homelessness, it is hoped that the iKozie could help young people escape from shared housing for a first starter home.
Other proposed uses include stacking the modular units to create sustainable mixed communities for students, young professionals and key workers.
Kieran O’Donnell, The Homeless Foundation trustee, said: “After years of planning we are delighted that the iKozie is now a reality and will be used to house the homeless in Worcester.”
Councillor Mike Johnson, chair of the Worcester City Council’s Communities Committee, said: “Worcester City Council is proud to support such an interesting and innovative concept.
“We wish the Homeless Foundation every success and will continue to work with them on future plans to create more iKozie homes for our city.”
Earlier this month, The Big Issue looked at the future of housing with seven big ideas on how to put roofs over heads in the coming years.