Every year in Britain, floods cause damage to houses. One solution to this issue could be to construct floating houses in flood-prone areas.
To demonstrate the concept, the UK’s first floating house has been built on the River Thames in Marlow. The main structure of the house and the floors are made from Caltite concrete.
The house is constructed in its own dock-like structure which allows for the natural movement of flood waters to flow, with the house floating on the surface. Four steel ‘dolphins’ stabilise the house so it can move up and down without tipping as the water rises and falls.
The house has a cellar which has concrete floors that are waterproof in a way that prevents rising damp. It was designed by Baca architects, who specialise in flood resistant architecture which they call Aquatecture. They are working on water-resistant buildings in many parts of the world.
It may not be possible to completely waterproof existing homes, but the Thames floating houses shows that new homes can be built that are unaffected by floods. Though many people believe that only wood houses can float, Baca has shown that houses with concrete flooring and walls are a viable solution to houses that can float on flood waters.
Floating commercial buildings could also be constructed from concrete. The only drawback is that making a floating building could be more expensive than traditional building methods.
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