Affordable housing is a growing crisis in large cities around the world. Socio-economic inequalities combined with a lack of affordable rental housing are the major contributing factors to why people everywhere are struggling to stay in their homes. Citizen Design takes an invested interest in the public discourse of this crisis and strives to be a part of the solution. This year, Citizen competed in Bee Breeder’s 2019 International Architecture Competition that asked participants to propose collective living solutions for the affordable housing crisis in Rome. Years of housing shortages have created dense, over-populated neighborhoods leading to rising rental prices. This, combined with an increase in unemployment and a higher cost-of-living, has caused thousands of families and individuals to be evicted from their homes. Rome is just one of several capital cities experiencing challenging living situations.

Citizen was inspired to offer a solution that promoted affordability, community, and sustainability while integrating seamlessly with the existing fabric of Roman culture.

Located in the courtyard of the Piazza Mazzini 13, Altea Rosata would retain the existing housing and preserve public space by extending above the urban fabric. The towers promote community through shared spaces including sky gardens, large community kitchens, and living areas without fully isolating tenants from the city around it. By situating the structures within the common typology of courtyard buildings, it is possible to construct its analog in many other locations throughout Rome and other densely populated cities around the world. We have identified similar sites in Turkey, Chile, and France, all of which share this site’s opportunity for Altea Rosata CO-HOUSING to be firmly positioned.
Altea Rosata presents the possibility of “node owners” moving from tower to tower as they see fit. With the purchase of a prefabricated node each tenant gains access to a personal space styled to their preference, while maintaining an identical footprint and attachment as their neighbors. For every three residential floors exists a larger community floor acting as a “neighborhood.” These communal floors will feature professional grade kitchens, communal gathering spaces, and specialized amenities.
With a core comprised of 3D printed carbon nano-tubes the Altea Rosata structures are constructed via drone. This reduces the amount of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gas emissions associated with transporting building materials as opposed to traditional methods. With great tensile support, the pairing of carbon nano-tubes with the comprehensive strength of glass allows for impressive super-structure heights. Radiative cooling structural wood will be used as the primary enclosure for the nodes. The lignen harvested from this wood makes it lighter and 8x stronger than natural wood, as well as provides a renewable source for the building of the carbon nano-tube structure.
Braid. Stack. Transfer. Altea Rosata. Co-Housing. Rome.