We've heard of garden huts that rotate (see our article about George Bernard Shaw's revolving hut), but never a cabin that gets up and walks across the garden. Here's a prototype for a Walking House created by Danish design team N55 – which promises to take you even farther afield. The House is a modular dwelling system intended to provide the inhabitant with a peaceful nomadic existence that has minimum impact on the environment. If it works (which we hope it will), it'll be able to walk slowly from site to site, allowing its owner to change views every single minute of every single day.
The Walking House is the result of a project for Wysing Arts Centre in Cambridgeshire, England, to help a group of local travelers live as seasonal workers on farms. Its design was inspired by the traditional Romany caravan, but is a little higher-tech. In order to walk, the structure has six legs, three of which are always on the ground, to provide stability. Add units together and you can have a Walking Collective or a Walking Village. It collects energy from its surroundings using solar cells and small windmills. It can collect rain water and heat it using solar power. You can also attach a small greenhouse unit to provide food, and a composting toilet system to remove what's, er, left over. With luck, it promises to be amphibious too.
Being totally nomadic requires the world to be a little more flexible than it currently is – you know, little things like land ownership, borders and the like. Clearly the Walking House has a keen anarchic streak, challenging issues of land ownership and accessibility. Come the revolution, expect to see these robotic homes roaming the countryside freely, composting as they go. RM