The Nest Modular Housing in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam is an experimental project which aims to overcome current social - economic challenges in Vietnam’s cities. The design concept is based on the strategic ideas of spatial flexibility and modular prefabrication in order to create truly affordable and sustainable homes for low and average-income people. The project consists of 225 modular apartments ranged from 25m2 to 150m2, shop-houses, public facilities and gardens. The project reaches for significant achievements in terms of affordability, sustainability, social equity, technological innovation and aesthetic aspects. The design intentions are based on the 5Ps criteria, including Prosperity, People, Proficiency, Planet, and Progress.

1. PROSPERITY:
The Nest Modular Housing is one of the first social housings in Vietnam which are really based on a comprehensive financial model which is applicable directly to Ho Chi Minh City context. Besides, modular design and prefabricated construction also give to the project many notably financial benefits. Generally, the project would be built significantly cheaper, faster and smarter than conventional housings in Vietnam.

2. PEOPLE:
The great flexibility of building design offers many choices for working people. The project has implemented universal design strategies, encouraged many participants in a collaborative process and would greatly improve working safety. By giving more truly affordable homes to the majority of home buyers, the project would bring them many more opportunities and find a way to improve social equality and ethical standards in Vietnamese cities.

3. PROFICIENCY:
The project proposes the idea that every modular apartment can be expanded, renovated or replaced accordingly to demographic changes. The building is integrated with the landscape, allows for open views, maximizes day lighting and natural ventilation; and creates emotional spaces. Smart built-in and loose furniture provide a high level of functionality and flexibility in term of use and materiality. Rather than a completely fixed building, we try to create a flexible architecture which can breathe, grow, and tell an open-ended story of life.

4. PLANET:
Most structural and interior components of the project are made of sustainable, recyclable and cost-effective locally-made materials. Moreover, prefabricated construction is an inherently more sustainable way of building with significant environmental benefits. The project also implements effective passive design strategies, landscape design, waste management and recycling plan, natural ventilation, energy saving, as well as water collection system and vegetable farming.

5. PROGRESS:
We took lessons from foreign and local precedents, and at the same time researched the housing market in Vietnamese cities to explore and develop the strategic concept of modular prefabrication which is fully adapted to the local context and can also be intelligently transferable to other projects at different sites, scales and typologies. The Nest Modular Housing proposes a revolutionary design and construction concept which might act as a much more advanced paradigm for social and affordable housings in Vietnam.

2020

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Site area: 7,500 m2
Footprint area: 3,060 m2
Total gross floor area: 33,300 m2
Building height: 63,9 m
Main structure: In-situ concrete foundation, basement and lift cores; prefabricated modules
Materials: AAC blocks; low UV glazing; aluminum frames; plasterboard & cement-board panels; ceramic & cement tiles; bamboo; MDF & HDF cabinetry, etc...
Estimated construction cost: 21,500,000 USD
Functions: 2 buildings containing 225 affordable apartments in 16 types; a 3,000 m2 basement, 3,600 m2 of parking; 2,800 m2 of commercial and public spaces; and over 10,000 m2 of landscape areas and circulation spaces.

Vinh Phuc Ta (Project Leader), Casa Yen Nguyen, Hoang Hai Le, Kim Quy Nguyen, Quang Phong Tran, Anh Tuan Pham, Thanh Quy Nguyen

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