University of Westminster Architecture MA student Mihai Chiriac’s project Aquaponic Future Housing won an honorary mention in the International Biodesign Competition organised by Inhabitat Magazine.

Mihai’s Aquaponic Future Houses are three-story homes made out of 3D-printed biodegradable vegetable-based bioplastic. They house living plants and fish in a closed-loop system, where the plants feed the fish, the fish feed the plants, plants produce oxygen for the home’s inhabitants and the fish produce food.

In order to create a more sustainable environment, the building uses built-in hydroponics and aquaculture for growing food at home. The home is intended for neglected urban spaces to help urban dwellers live a greener, healthier life.

The project was created at Design Studio 10 at the University of Westminster’s Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment, which works to support its students by providing access to cutting edge facilities and one-to-one mentoring. It also works to support environmental sustainability by participating in Eco Campus programme.

When speaking about his project, Mihai said: “Although the proposal can seem ‘futuristic’, I believe that 3D Printing and Biodesign technologies will become more prevalent in the not so distant future, as technological innovation develops exponentially.  

“The scale at which these technologies can be applied is constantly increasing; consequently, we will soon be able to better address the expanding number of architectural and environmental design challenges.

“I was happy that my ideas were taken into consideration at an international level. I was also lucky to have the opportunity to develop them during my first year of Masters at Westminster, with the support of the Design Studio 10 and technical studies tutors, as well as using the ‘RPP Material Practice Award’ resource.”

The Biodesign Competition is a two week long sprint, seeking bold and innovative visions for the future of construction at the intersection of the physical, the digital and the biological.

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