With urban density and rising rent prices being firmly on Maltese people’s minds, now’s the time when creativity and good design can help to solve some very real problems that the islands are facing.
Although these ideas couldn’t be grafted onto our context without serious tweaking, they definitely present a strong case for how we could be doing things differently in Malta when it comes to housing.
Young, Maltese people increasingly want to move out of their parents’ home, but their needs require much less space than traditional Maltese properties provide. Micro-apartments have their downsides, and no one would like to see Malta’s properties turning into poky broom cupboards. But with some creative solutions there’s no reason we couldn’t make ‘Medium-Apartments’ work really well and help us save space.
2. Cooperative Housing
Even if young, Maltese people do want to leave home early, they can’t always afford it. Communal living is ideal for people who are at an age where mingling and creating social communities is at the core of their priorities. Cooperative housing provides shared living spaces like kitchens and living rooms – meaning costs are cut down, but independence and fun definitely are not.
3. Homes on wheels
You know how a lot of families in Malta have a winter house and a summer house? Not to mention the apparent national affinity with camper-vans. Why not convert all that space-taking energy into mega-stylish homes on wheels?
4. Robotic Housing
What about if instead of building extensions and/or bigger houses, we found a way to make our houses smarter? Why not tuck a bed away when it’s not being used? Seems like thinking laterally could allow us to live in the kind of spacious homes we really want.
5. Transforming Spaces
We’re a long way away from having to live in tiny rooms with no windows, but this project shows how spaces can be transformed into liveable homes with technology and a bit of imagination. How can we use light, projection and pattern to make our Maltese homes look and feel more comfortable?
6. Capsule homes
People complain about boat houses and illegal temporary structures in Malta – but creating single unit homes is not a bad idea if they’re made beautifully. Just imagine if our landscape was peppered with gorgeous contemporary architecture – now that would make for awesome island living.
BONUS: Homes inside homes
Maltese practice Valentino Architects have jumped right into the world of alternative housing design formats. Their project, Oggi’s Box_Room, is an example of how compact living doesn’t need to be any less stylish than conventional homes. We want more of this!