Ori revolutionises compact city living

Compact modular unit designed to simultaneously function as a storage space, bedroom, living room and workspace.

Urban density is one of the foremost problems our cities face amidst a rapidly growing global population. With lack of development space, it has become increasingly difficult to find affordable housing in the overcrowded cities. Architects, spatial designers and urban planners are now reacting to this problem with clever solutions that tackle lack of space. What originally began as an MIT interior design project has now developed into Ori, a shape-shifting, all-in-one apartment unit that takes compact living to a new level. 

San Francisco-based designer Yves Béhar was brought in to design the system and lend a more aesthetic appeal to the mechanical prototype. The result is a compartmentalised box structure, complete with home storage, as well as bedroom, living and working facilities. Displaying smart spacial design, the click of a button can move the module across a room in order to reconfigure a small apartment space. 

The system transforms a cramped city space into a convenient urban home that brings new meaning to practicality. For example, when a resident gets up in the morning, the built-in bed can retract and the whole unit can then be moved to make space for the living area on the other side.

After fitting units into a series of Boston apartments, the Ori team rented out the spaces through Airbnb to test the system on guests. The team has now refined the design, which is expected to be released into the market in 2017. 

The final product will come in a variety of colour schemes, finishes and materials, and will feature a universal button panel to control the system. Developers also plan on making Ori smartphone-compatible so the more tech-dependent users can choose to control the system through an app.