The kitset or modular bach is not a new concept in New Zealand but in recent years we’ve garnered international acclaim for our innovative work in this area.
In 2000 Architect André Hodgskin came up with his pioneering Bachkit contemporary prefab pavilions. His latest take on the idea is iPAD, a minimalist kitset holiday house with a starting price of $149,000 that comes with foldaway fittings and single 50-square-metre modules that can be added together to form L-shaped or linear buildings around a deck area. ipad.net.nz
Then there’s the Habode, an 80-square-metre plus decks, steel-framed no frills bach (or granny flat, small house or studio) designed by Kiwi inventor Rod Gibson of International Housing Solutions in Canterbury. Designed as a flat pack that fits into a large shipping container, the Habode can be installed in three days, is rated for a cyclone-strength storm and lasts for 50 years.
Habode individual units sell for around $160,000 including installation and they can be easily relocated and their glass and steel materials recycled. habode.com
While not technically a kitset bach, Auckland-based Herbst Architects’ Te Modular is designed to significantly reduce building costs through standardisation of many of its elements. Known for their stunning bach designs, the award-winning architects came up with the concept for Te Modular after being regularly approached by clients with insufficient budget for a bespoke design.
“Our thinking was not so much in terms of a kitset, but a bach that is adaptable enough to suit most sites that we design and detail extensively, down to the furniture and fittings,” says Lance
Herbst. “We can then repeat this, allowing us to significantly reduce the cost to the client of professional fees.”
Built of timber, corrugated iron and glass fibre sheeting, Te Modular’s basic module is a 28-square-metre living pavilion (which can double as sleeping space) witha covered deck. If you need more rooma 36-square-metre bedroom pavilion with a covered walkway can be added.
Words by: Carol Bucknell
Photography by: Herbst Architects