Sometimes you want a room with a view. Sometimes you want a bunker that's walled off to the world. Why not have both? The Sharifi-ha House can shape-shift based on the amount of sun or level of privacy that its residents need at that particular moment.
Designed by the Iranian architects at next office, this seven-floor home in Tehran is engineered to be as flexible as possible, with three volumes that swing out towards the street.
The rotating cubes can serve as both an aesthetic element and as a seasonal energy-saver. In the summertime, the volumes can swing out ventilate the home with warm breezes and add additional outdoor space with light-filled patios. In the winters (which can be quite snowy at Tehran's altitude) the walls can help shut out frigid air, keeping heat indoors.
The rooms rotate on a mechanism that's similar to the kind below moving exhibitions in museums or swivelling shipping containers at ports. This particular system was fabricated in Germany as the client had contacts there from his job importing large industrial CNC milling machines.
The architects created digital models as well as practical models to make sure the boxes slid out in the ways they imagined.
The rooms themselves — which are a breakfast room, guest room and workroom — also adapt to their indoor-outdoor uses with a series of little details. The railings that keep people from falling out of the adjacent room when the boxes face the street can be folded down, and a moveable step rises up to give access to the box.
The rest of the home is quite beautiful as well, but the kinetic architecture of the facade really makes it an urban spectacle that's truly never the same house twice. [Arch2O]