Flood-proof house would rise with the tide

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The Elevating House could be built in early 2017, if planning approval is granted(Credit: Larkfleet Group)

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Some areas in the UK can't be developed for housing because of the risk of flooding, but with house prices in the country so high, there's money to be made if developers can find a way to build in such areas. Here lies the impetus for the Elevating House: a proposal for a family home that would simply rise on stilts when the floods come.

Designed by building and development firm Larkfleet Group, the Elevating House looks very much like the kind of typical three-bedroom detached family home found throughout the UK.

However, should a flood warning be issued, a mechanical jacking system comprising a motor, gearbox, and drive shafts would lift the 65 tonne (72 US ton) home 1.5 m (5 ft) off the ground within five minutes.

The owners wouldn't actually stay in the house when the house is raised (for the obvious safety issues), but would instead need to pack up some essential belongings and travel to temporary accommodation elsewhere.

A roof-based solar panel array and battery system would ensure that the home maintains power while in its elevated state, while the sewage and water connections would stay active thanks to flexible hoses.

Naturally, before taking up residence again, the floor beneath the home would have to be cleared and it's possible a severe enough flood could drive debris into its lifting mechanism, damaging it somehow. That said, the basic idea seems sound and not far removed from the hydraulic greenhouse from earlier in the year, just larger.

Larkfleet has submitted planning permission for the Elevating House and, if all goes well, it could be built as soon as early 2017. Following this, the firm expects to test it for up to five years. Larkfleet also says that because the house will feature a modular steel-frame design, it could be later disassembled and re-erected on another site on conventional foundations.

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