Airbnb ventures into home design

Original article can be found here by Architecture and Design

A product of Airbnb’s recently established innovation lab, Samara, the company has announced a new initiative looking at new ways homes can be designed, built and shared.

Hoping to achieve more humanistic, future-oriented and waste-conscious design, Samara will investigate how buildings could utilise sophisticated manufacturing techniques, smart-home technologies and insight from the Airbnb community on changing owner/occupant needs over time.

This project, called ‘Backyard’, will use the same lens through which Airbnb was envisioned – the potential of space – and apply it more broadly to architecture and construction.

According to Airbnb co-founder and head of Samara, Joe Gebbia: “We began with a simple question: what does a home that is designed and built for sharing actually look and feel like? The answer is not simple at all. Other questions quickly emerged. Can a home respond to the needs of many inhabitants over a long period of time? Can it support and reflect the tremendous diversity of human experience? Can it keep up with the rate at which the world changes? Can we accomplish this without filling landfills with needless waste?”

“The way buildings are made is outdated and generates a tremendous amount of waste. In order to meet the demands of the future, whether it be climate displacement or rural-urban migration, the home needs to evolve, to think forward," he adds. 

“With a decade of accumulated knowledge about how people travel, live, and share their spaces, I believe Airbnb has a unique responsibility and global opportunity to improve the way we build and share homes."