Parasquare is 5x5x5m cube dwelling unit that is prefabricated under the controlled conditions of a factory and shipped to site for assembly. 

Gareth Hoom & Matt Seager

Parasquare is manufactured in two halves and is fused together at the central structural steel ship stair. The pods are two level, two bedroom pods that are designed to house two students. The lower level is designed as the shared level, and the upper level is designed as the private or separated level. The lower level contains a entry closet, a living area with a built-in ‘L’ shaped sofa and built-in storage. There is also a small kitchenette and eating area as well as a washroom with a separated water closet and  shower stall. The upper level contains two equal bedrooms wit the intent of creating a equal partnership between the roommates. The bedrooms also house built-in furniture, including the bed area with storage below and shelving around, as well as a desk and a small walk-in closet. In between the bedrooms at the top of the stair we have also included a Juliet balcony which is accessible to both students at any time.

Implementation of Parasquare is possible a variety of ways. The primary models of application are a stand-alone model and also a stacked in-fill model. The stand alone model is quite simple, where Parasquare would be assembled and placed on just about any site imaginable. This could be in a laneway, rooftop or parking lot - wherever it is desired to be. The second model, the stacked in-fill model, sees Parasquare as a vertical pod system that is supported and housed within a structural steel exoskeleton. The exoskeleton can be stand-alone or can be affixed to an existing building or structure for lateral support - becoming a parasitic structure.

The Parasquare exoskeleton provides vertical circulation through two sets of stairs, one at each end of the system, and also a elevator lift similar to those found on construction sites. The vertical circulation zones are encapsulated by a metal screen wall system that provides exterior visibility, but provides some protection from weather conditions. The stacked in-fill model also  provides to its residents ‘Open Pods’ Which are the same 5x5x5m pods but they contain only one level within them and are completely empty. They are intended to be flex spaces and can be used for activity, studying or storage.

In summary, Parasquare is an incredibly versatile pod dwelling unit that, through its possible systems, can be implemented to provide comfortable, compact and economical housing to students across the GTA and around the world. 

@StudentDwellTO 2019  |  A collaboration between University of Toronto, Ryerson University, York University, and OCAD University.