UCL Institute for Environmental Design and Engineering


Flood House: Bartlett Materialisation Grant

Flood House

30 November 2016


Key facts:

  • Funding Body/Client: University College London
  • Project Partners: Bartlett School of Architecture
  • Total Project Value: £50,000 
  • UCL/IEDE Project Value Share: £50,000
  • Duration:  2014-2016
  • Status: Active

This collaborative project with the Bartlett School of Architecture will realize the construction of a new flood-responsive architecture sited in the Thames Estuary. The project titled the ‘Flood House’, proposes a small-scale prototype structure that will function as part projected future dwelling, part practical laboratory and part 1:1 case study for how certain construction materials operate and perform within the very particular tide environment. Through the use of a unique cross-disciplinary approach, the project team will use their specialist expertise to create a project that is conceived between architecture, environmental research and art practice. 

IEDE staff will lead on the development of whole-building simulation models in order to assess the hygrothermal performance of the building materials used in the construction and the ventilation potential for the building. They will also provide advice on the construction materials used in order to minimize the risk of microbial contamination and subsequent indoor air quality issues that may arise when structures are exposed to long-term damp. 

The project has been awarded the 2014 Bartlett Research Materialisation Grant which is awarded annually by the Faculty through the Bartlett Research Challenges to materialize cross-disciplinary research and is also being supported by Arup Engineers and Smart Planning. 


PI: Matthew Butcher

Co-I: Rokia Raslan

Co-I: Jonathon Taylor                                             


The project is currently in the planning phase. Plans for the production of outputs include publication in the architectural press such as The Architects Journal, RIBA Journal, Architecture Today, Icon and Art Review as well as the local press. Furthermore, a number of academic publications (before and after the construction) are planned.  This will particularly focus on the construction methods of the project and the process of analysing the buildings behaviour. 


By manifesting the work as an art and architectural installation it will transfer the research, both the design and environmental elements of the project, to as wide an audience as possible. Further the project manifesting in this form will expose the normally specialised research associated with Environmental Design to a new and expansive audiences. The research will enter the public domain in several capacities such as a one day event on Canvey Island that will include contributions from artists, writers and scientist interested in the subject of flooding in the estuary.   Furthermore, in the run up to the project a series of workshops will be organized to ascertain local perception of flooding and understanding as to the risks of living and building in a flooded environment.  This information will be used in further publication and dissemination.


More information can be found on The Bartlett project page

For further information please contact: Rokia Raslan