The Resort Prefab Complex would be very similar in character to the Utilihab Complex but would be based instead on the use of prefab resort and vacation home architecture bought off-the-shelf. Logically enough, the use of this approach would favor development that's focused on resort services as a basic industry for the community and locations popular as tourist attractions. A large and growing number of companies around the world now produce prefabricated cottages and homes intended as resort and vacation housing. Most are Asian/Polynesian inspired in their style of design, though they might be built anywhere from Fiji to Norway. In recent years Modernist prefab housing has become quite a fad with a vast diversity of new and interesting structures appearing. Focused largely on the vacation home market rather than resorts and using light foundation structures, many are easily deployable on the IMF ferro-cement platforms and they offer such great novelty in design that they have tourism potential all by themselves.
Perhaps the most advanced of these products are the few actual on and under water houses such as the Sea Room housing unit developed by US Subs and some small Lexan shell structures used as underwater cottages, hotel rooms, and restaurants. These would offer a radically different approach to Seed settlement design, with the basic ferro-cement platform structure relegated to garden space almost exclusively while most residents are placed at or just underneath its periphery and underwater. IMF (International Marine Flotation -the leading manufacturer of ferro-cement float platforms) has also designed some of their platforms to include a 'basement' room below water level, with large porthole windows offering an underwater view, though this would tend to be limited to a single module since they never developed a means to link these spaces side-to-side. With a single 10 meter square platform module offering a possible 800-900sf area internally, such below-water floor modules could make for suitable individual apartments, making for an interesting variation on the Seed settlement design where the top deck is used entirely for gardens while peripheral modules provide simple apartment space. However, this tactic would limit exterior underwater windows to a single side and the cost for creating these unusual platform modules is unknown.
The use of this prefab architecture approach would generally be predicated on construction speed and a desire for a very specific look for the community, based on residents' own interest in a particular type/brand of prefab dwelling or its tourism potential. With these forms of housing available off-the-shelf, a radical reduction in the time of construction can be realized -though probably no better than the Utilihouse concept can offer. (currently, two companies now offer prefab housing based on T-slot framing as the Utilihouse would use) Some prefabs can also offer a cost savings because of reduced labor, but in general most are at least as expensive as conventional stick frame construction.
A few of these prefab home products -usually based on smaller scale designs- have modular component systems that can be rearranged or can at least be easily disassembled and moved. But many do not and most also cannot support a combined roof deck or integration into a unified community structure. In order to accommodate these limitations a larger amount of platform space may be required as well as a 'houseboat' community approach where the main platform is relegated to community uses while individual dwellings are placed on individual platform 'lot's around its periphery, thus allowing them to be disconnected and reconnected to allow the community to expand without the buildings being dismantled.
Obviously this strategy, and the use of such prefabs in general, can only be considered transitional. At a certain point the community must abandon such structures for a more unified structural system in order to evolve toward open sea capability. So while these prefabs offer a fast track to initial settlement creation, the point of this later transition could cause a delay in evolution, owing to the fact that people may be reluctant to abandon what they may come to see as individual personal homes in favor of a kind of condominium housing. The approach is probably best where the intention is to predominately support tourism or where an initial community is using very modest sized low-cost prefab dwellings with a plan to fast-track the use of another structural system -in effect using the prefabs as a kind of construction site housing. prefabrication is the popular method for construction nowadays.
- Utilihab Complex
- Container Mod Complex
- Commercial Frame Complex
- Commercial Concrete Complex
- Organic/Ferro-cement Complex