His new venture is called Blokable, and with it Holm intends to offer shippable housing units that are fully integrated with his company’s smart home technology hub.
The idea was born after visiting several shipping container communities in Detroit in 2015; Holm rationalised the only way to free up the housing market was by making housing that could be ordered and configured as easily as buying a car.
“I became convinced that the world needed a beautifully designed, safe, and software-enabled building that could be ordered and delivered rather than built on-site,” Holm says on the Blokable website. “To achieve this, we’d have to design a building system that could produce different lengths, achieve different square footage, and give customers the ability to create different designs, forms, and price points. The biggest need and where we could provide the most benefit to start was to enable developers to reduce the cost and complexity of building housing.”
The units the company aims to produce are aptly named “Bloks,” and are available in lengths from 5.5 metres to 11.5 metres. Clients will also be able to add basic and premium bathrooms and kitchens; other modular additions like stairs, railings are available as well. The price per square foot is expected to range from $150 to $300 (USD). Finished units are estimated to cost between $25,000 and $100,000.
Holm is, by his own admission entering a market with significant competition, but he believes his company has the advantage over other modular architecture by integrating modern technology into each Blok. The company will outfit each Blok unit with its “BlokSense” smart-home control platform, which will provide a way for homeowners to control smart electric, water, temperature, lighting and security systems. The smart-home platform also allows occupants to set the system to different modes including Home, Away, Sleep, or Vacation.
Bloks can also be stacked up to five units high, and this allows Blokable to build a range of offerings, from singleoccupant studios to market-rate apartment buildings, as well as affordable housing.
Blokable: stackable smart housing.