When floodwaters rise there aren't a lot of places to hide, and in the oft-rainy UK that can spell big problems and major property damage. So in an attempt to mitigate the problem, British authorities have just built the country's first amphibious house on the banks of the River Thames. When the river rises, the house rises with it. Bring on the Biblical deluge.
Britain's Environment Agency is not the first to dream up or even build a floating domicile of this kind--variations on this theme exist in Canada, Germany, and the U.S. for instance, as well as in some Southeast Asian and Latin American countries (where homes are commonly built on stilts to avoid seasonal floodwaters). But for the UK government to take an active interest in modern buoyant abodes is significant in that it could help drive technology development forward in coming years. It also serves as a kind of indicator that governments around the globe are quietly recognizing that the coming decades are likely going to bring increasingly nasty weather events.
For guidance in floodwater control the British are naturally looking to the Dutch, reports the BBC. Much of the Netherlands is below sea level, and the Dutch have a reputation for having the best flood mitigation technology on the globe. Several years ago, a Dutch firm built a few floating houses outside of Amsterdam to see how they might work. Another Dutch design house is working on a multi-unit apartment complex that could float on water.
The British concept, designed by UK firm Baca Architects, builds on these earlier ideas. Secured in place by four vertical posts sunk deep in the ground, the house resides partially submerged in the ground in a kind of dock lined with retaining walls and seated on a concrete slab. If floodwater begins to flow across the surface of the land, it is diverted down into this dock, where it begins to fill the chamber in which the house rests. The house itself is designed as a kind of free-floating pontoon, buoyed upward by hollow chambers made of wood and concrete. Secured in place by those four posts, the house can move vertically but not laterally, so it won't float away.
When flooding subsides, it comes to rest again in its original position in the dock, its occupants and their possessions no worse for wear. At least, that's the idea. We'll have to wait and see if this one sinks or swims, but the idea is intriguing in a world where sea levels are on the rise and population growth increasingly drives human habitation toward places where water often wants to flow.
Anchored House Boat.
Oh great so when the great floods come and they will then all of these homeowners will be the next Noah's ark.....just imagine the claims religious leaders will make of this!
You really lost me, but I will make one comment in regards to making claims on floods.
Once upon a time, I lived in an apartment and over the weekend it rained really hard and the area flood and water came into my apartment. Pretty much everyone said, the loss of my property was my problem and I should of has flood insurance; the end.
But when a hurricane comes and hits a place like NY or New Jersey or some other large place, the state always runs to the Fed and request billions of free money for all those without insurance and yes to be politically correct the FED will pay what is request or some other large amount, but for us little guys all alone, which we don't make the national media, are SCREWED!
Typically aren’t homes and business owners required to have insurance? Most of the damage in NY and New Jersey should be insured and like me, those renters should have gotten renters insurance.
But politics as they are, these people will get money from a government that is grossly in debt (16trillion) for monies they can't manage anyways, just to continue to keep their own political offices.
NY and New Jersey is only asking 300 billion each. No big deal right.
2nd i feel like many people feel that way , ( with the exsessive spending and what not ) however our gvt is set up in such a way that us as the " little guys" have little or no power to legaly change how our gvt is owned and opperated. ;)
I like it, but my one thought is even if it is viable,how are they going to retro-fit buildings already built, or are they going to tear down everything and rebuild it to float?
My second thought, how will it react to a tsunami, like Japan had?
A tsunami would just rip the house in half without giving it time to rise free of its dock - or the house would come free of the dock (this would happen with any sufficient depth of flooding) and either capsize and colapse or float with the water like an unmoored boat - destroying and destroyed by all it collides with.
Actually Robot, I think your confusing what you had seen televised and the actual reality of it.
I know the media made FEMA and the FED govmt seem all super hero and savior like, but fact is 3 of my family members homes that were completely destroyed all keep getting their claims dismissed by both FEMA and the FED govmt. All we keep hearing is that our claims are getting denied and we can write them if we wish to dispute it.
In regards to your insurance note, most of the parts in NJ that flooded don't offer flood insurance to their customers, it was actually never an option for them. The homes that were destroyed due to gas leaks, are also hearing that it was initially due to flooding..
So yes, most of these people are also hearing as you so nicely put it "loss of my property was my problem and I should of has flood insurance"..
FEMA jumped in to cover their tracks and say they showed up, that’s about it..
There aren't that many tsunamis on the Thames chaps! Doubt that was a design consideration!
Houses along the Thames vulnerable to flooding are generally so expensive that the purchasers have the money to either absorb the impacts of floods, or they buy the plot with the house on it, rip it down and rebuild. I have seen that happen with houses that are only a few years old, so if the idea is viable and effective, eventually all the houses will be replaced.
An impressive flood relief effort currently on the Thames is the Jubilee River, which is a huge 11km long flood channel, so there's certainly the money to spend, that was £110 million.
Perhaps all the homes should have balloons on the corners and below each corner ancors.
Everyone can have a home in the sky!
Floods, no worries!
Unless the basin is open to the current, a river houseboat will collect flotsem under the hull. When the water receeds, the house settles on it and can damage the hull. gotta have some way to divert or clean out trash.
If all the homes were submarines and only surface for entry or exit, perhaps this would solve the problem.
It seems to me that piping,sewage and conduit connections to such a dwelling would be "problematic" to say the least.I realize houseboats and RV's have such connections, but these are temporary. Anyone out there have further insight in this area?
If you've ever been to Amsterdam (and many other places in The Netherlands) you'll have seen the concept at work. Floating houses have been common there since many, many decades. But now, living in one of those homes, you get hungry. Where are the floating supermarkets? How, and in what kind of transport, do I get there?