Property start-up Cube Haus has assembled a stellar cast of architects – including Sir David Adjaye and Carl Turner – to design a range of modular prefabs that can slot into the city’s ‘left over’ spaces.
Cube Haus is the brainchild of entrepreneurs Philip Bueno de Mesquita and Paul Tully. The pair co-founded Land Converter in 2015, which specialises in buying and developing ‘unwanted or neglected spaces’ in London and the UK, starting from just 500 sq ft – approximately the size of a double garage. Cube Haus takes the pair’s desire to ‘disrupt the existing housing market further,’ by developing these ‘infill’ plots with adaptable, architect-designed homes.
Says Cube Haus co-founder Paul Tully: ‘Our background is in running unorthodox, creative companies but we have always loved great architecture. We looked around and realised that there was an opportunity to marry some of the awkward urban spaces we often come across unexpectedly in the city with great new buildings.’
Buyers can choose from four designs by Adjaye – who Tully previously commissioned to design his London homes, The Lost House and Cube House – Carl Turner, Skene Catling de la Peña and designer Faye Toogood.
Each prefab dwelling is made using cross-laminated timber and can be built off-site in a factory before being installed on sites ranging from back-yard plots to rooftops.
Turner’s black, gabled design revolves around a central courtyard, while Toogood’s recalls a rustic cabin, complete with floor-to-ceiling wood interiors. Both Adjaye and SCDLP have opted for boxy blocks, with living spaces stacked vertically.
While Cube Haus designs are customisable, a two-bedroom design clock in at approximately 646 sq ft, and the three-bedrooms version at 1,184 sq ft. Self-build buyers can buy ‘off the peg’, or commission their home to be built and installed on a site acquired by Cube Haus.
Cube Haus fully manages the project from beginning to end, with costs starting from £400 per sq ft, including all fees. The houses will be marketed via The Modern House from £700,0000-£800,000 – a price tag beyond most first-time buyers, but aimed at buyers who normally wouldn’t consider using an architect.
Adds Tully: ‘We are able to work at lower margins than the big house builders, due to our nimble approach.’
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