While collating my ideas and putting together sketches I decided to look at the kinds of spaces I am designing for. My target market are young professionals living in rented city centre accommodation. Generally these flats have limited floor and wall space and are usually shared by a number of flatmates.

As you can see from the pictures of my own flat we have limited wall space in my hallway, and the maximum width of the piece could only be around 1m wide, and no taller than 2m. Also as hallways aren’t particularly wide I need to keep to piece as narrow as possible.

Similarly in other flats I photographed most renters in the city centre have a similar issue in that their homes lacking both wall space and height. This is something I must consider in my final design. I feel it is important that modular pieces fold away flat so don’t take up space when not in use. I would also like to incorporate storage for other items people generally keep in their hall such as coats, shoes and bags. Also being able to store a bicycle close to the ceiling or vertically would prevent the handlebars occupying a great deal of space.


As gentrification of large city centres results in the development of numerous apartment buildings I decided to investigate the legal size requirements of new build apartments as according to the Government’s Building regulations:

  • Every door to a habitable room and the room containing the WC has a clear minimum opening width as set out in Table 1.1 when measured in accordance with diagram 1.1.Table 1.1diagram 1.1
  • Any localised obstruction such as a radiator, does not occur opposite or close to a doorway or at a change of direction, and is no longer than 2m in length; and the corridor is not reduced below a minimum of 750mm at any point.
  •  The minimum clear width of every hall or landing is 900mm

(HM Government: 2016)


As well as the size of my target audience’s home I felt it was important to find the average size of an adults bike. This is to ensure that my piece is both compact but able to accommodate an average bicycle:

“Bicycle handlebars are 15 – 18 inches wide for road bikes, 20 – 24 inches for mountain bikes and hybrids. Overall bicycle length is about 68 inches. Thus, a minimum bicycle space 2 feet wide and 6 feet long is a minimum specification.” (Ross, 2010)


By being able to store a bike close to the ceiling or vertically would probably allow for more room in the home as handlebars would not get in the way.  I feel a simple hook system would enable users to move their bike to an appropriate position to suit their environment.


With these points in mind could a free standing piece be used as both a storage piece and a room divider? That way the piece could be used in a living space. I would also like to create storage items which folds away to prevent hallways space being taken up when the storage isn’t being used.

There are a number of innovative fold away piece available on the market as a way of combating shrinking floor space in contemporary homes.


Ross, A. Palmetto Cycling Coalition (2017) Bicycle Parking Info [Online] [Date Accessed 20th March 2017] http://pccsc.net/bicycle-parking-info/

HM Government (2016) Approved Document M: access to and use of buildings, volume 1: dwellings. London: NBS (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/access-to-and-use-of-buildings-approved-document-m)



Figures 1-11: Examples of rented city centre apartments [Photographs]

Figure 12: Average dimensions of a bicycle. Beach Bikes (2013) Correct Sizing of a Beach Cruiser [Online] [Date Accessed 25th March 2017] http://beachbikers.tumblr.com/post/41869872042/sizing-of-a-beach-cruiser-bike 

Figure 13: 2D to 3D furniture, De-Dimension. Jongha Choi (2017) De-dimension _ From 2D to 3D [Online] [Date Accessed 25th March 2017] http://jonghachoi.com/2015/10/09/hello-world/?ckattempt=1

Figure 14: Foldable wooden furniture. Becoration (2015) Foldable furniture for small apartments [Online] [Date Accessed 25th March 2017] http://becoration.com/foldable-furniture-for-small-apartments/

Figure 15: “Oyster” chair by Kawamura Ganjavian. Flikr (2010) “Oyster” chair by Kawamura Ganjavian [Online] [Date Accessed 25th March 2017] https://www.flickr.com/photos/lynfabrikken/5172262455/ 



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