2D Drafting

Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing

By Rose Barfield 5 min July 10, 2019
Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing

Sustainable Housing

A conglomerate of Dutch companies are seeking to upcycle decommissioned boats to provide the ideal housing solution for boat home lovers without sea legs. The Marine-doc Estate will be made from decommissioned waterway fighters. A step beyond simply turning shipping containers into sustainable houses.

Boat Homes

The boat homes will be made from decommissioned boats...
They will also be carbon neutral as they will generate their own power. The exterior will preserve much of the original ship aesthetic, whilst the interior will be sleek and modern. To date, there have already been a few similar projects and several boat-inspired buildings around the world.


The boats won't need to be scrapped and melted down for this project, saving CO2 emissions. They are also easy to transport as the suggested build-site is adjacent to water.

Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing- 6.-The-The-cultural-historical-qualities-as-starting-point-MDE-integrated-in-a-factory-quay

©Copyright images Studio Komma / Buro Poelman Reesink / Studio Kees Marcelis.

Each home will be energy neutral, so the green credentials don't stop at the build material itself! Solar power, thermal energy, ventilation with heat recovery, and insulation will work together to create a comfortable living environment, whilst a smart infrastructure grid will work to redistribute power.

The Design

Each site would have up to 10 sustainable houses. The initial plan is to build 2 sites in the Netherlands. If successful, a more ambitious 16 are planned internationally.

Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing- layout-1024x238

©Copyright images Studio Komma / Buro Poelman Reesink / Studio Kees Marcelis.

Every home will be unique. This is because, although waterway freighters are similar in design, they are not identical.

The design preserves the boat aesthetic and stern, wheelhouse (converted into a light well) and foredeck will remain intact, whilst the top deck of the boat will be repurposed into a rooftop garden.

Whilst the exterior will be made from recycled material, the interior deign is sleek, modern and extremely spacious. The proposed design even features a garage. The conversion would be completed with prefabricated sections which would keep renovations speedy.

Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing- Marine-doc-Estate-8-1024x683

©Copyright images Studio Komma / Buro Poelman Reesink / Studio Kees Marcelis.

The boats will be orientated to maximize sunlight. The bulk of the windows will be south-facing. The north-facing side of the boat will remain mostly covered. This will maximize privacy.

Similar Projects

Crazy as it may sound, it's not the first land bound boathouse of its kind.

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Benson Ford Shiphouse The boat that will never sail again. Image courtesy of -- Bryan Kasper

The Benson Ford Shiphouse was converted from a boat originally built in 1924 for the Ford Motor Company. After 50 years of service, it was repurposed into a 7,000 square foot (650 sqm) four-story summer home and now sits facing the Cuyahoga River, Northeast Ohio, US.

There are also reports of an Australian family living on a self-converted, land, boat home in 1964 and there is another example in Croatia.

There is even a rather unusual cottage that features a boat for a roof found at a BnB in Crozon, Bretagne, France.

Boat inspired buildings

Additionally, there are a whole host of boat themed buildings.

Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing- boat-houses-e1562073190449

The S.S Encinitas and the S.S Moon Light, Encinitas, California

The S.S Encinitas and the S.S Moon Light, Encinitas, California features a highly unusual two winged house frontage. Although it might look like it was made from real boats, the pair have never set sail. They were made from reclaimed wood from boats in the local harbor.

Other examples; The Deep, Hull, UK -- Klimahaus Bremerhaven, Bremerhaven, Germany, -- The House of Five Continents, Antwerpen, Belgium.

Land bound boat homes for sustainable housing- thedeephull edit

Boat-inspired The Deep Aquarium, Hull, England, looks out onto the water. Niel T via Flickr

Want to design your own sustainable houses?

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Rose Barfield

by Rose Barfield - CAD User Experience & Interface Design Specialist

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Rose is responsible for taking user feedback and improving the BricsCAD product. Before coming to BricsCAD, she was a CAD user and worked in the Automotive, Aerospace, and Defense industries as a Technical Illustrator. She loves finding out how things work, taking them apart, and (hopefully) putting them back together again.

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