Madeleine Kessler Architecture


More not Less

Selected as a Finalist for the Davidson Prize, 'More not Less' proposes design codes for temporary accommodation across the UK.

Homelessness is either preceded by trauma or causes trauma. This is often exacerbated by ‘temporary accommodation’ – often not short-term – before rehousing. The devastating failings of unregulated triage housing – which cannot be called ‘homes’ – significantly add to the trauma of those most in need. Family homes, prisons, and even free-range chickens all have minimum space standards, but there are no regulatory standards for temporary accommodation in the UK. New build schemes are approved on a sui generis basis, leading to a frequent lack of space, privacy, safety, community and wellbeing.

More Not Less responds with a design code to encourage aspiration rather than a race to the bottom. More than 120,000 children are currently living in temporary accommodation in the UK. They can spend years of their lives there, leading to a sense of worthlessness that is hard to shift. Our proposal tests its principles on a design for an intergenerational living place for families with children. Just as those in intensive care receive more care, Re-Group believes that those who need temporary accommodation deserve more not less. Through design, More Not Less aims to support the ‘un-othering’ of people who find themselves homeless and to achieve a level of care that is lacking in the housing sector as whole.

Currently councils are spending more than £1300 pcm in rent on temporary accommodation with little or no amenity space, exasperating the trauma of those who live there and leading directly to extra strain on services. Investing in good temporary accommodation now saves money. Embedding our 8 Principles of Care in the design and planning process across the country will encourage aspiration rather than a race to the bottom, and support developers, councils and architects to deliver good quality temporary housing, which supports those most in need.

More not Less is a collaboration by Re-Group: Madeleine Kessler Architecture and ZCD Architects with Datshiane Navanayagam, Architecture Doing Place, JCLA, Webb Yates Engineers, Charles Jegar, Gene Limbrick and Poppie Skold.

Find out more and watch our video on the link here.