Fly away home

We’ve talked before about reusing plane parts as furniture, and the LoTek library design using aircraft fuselages is a particular favourite of ours, even if it was never built. Well, there’s more than one way to lace a boot, and there’s more than one way to skin a Boeing 747.

This project by Syndesis Ltd for a house in the hills behind Malibu, California could become an adaptive reuse icon. It developed from an initial design with a floating curved roof. The symbolic wing became a genuine wing and the design evolved from there. They say:

As we analyzed the cost, it seemed to make more sense to acquire an entire airplane and to use as many of the components as possible, like the Native American Indians used every part of the buffalo. Therefore, the property is to consist of several structures all made with components and pieces of a Boeing 747-200 aircraft. As a structure and engineering achievement, the aircraft encloses a lot of space using the least amount of materials in a very resource efficient manner. The recycling of the 4.5 million parts of this “big aluminum can” is seen as an extreme example of sustainable reuse and appropriation. American consumers and industry throw away enough aluminum in a year to rebuild our entire airplane commercial fleet every three months.

Construction is now under way on the various buildings.

The wings and tail are being used to roof the main house,

parts of the fuselage are being used for other buildings including a guesthouse

and the nose is becoming an inspiring meditation pavilion where the windows will now function as skylights. And to prove it’s not just a castle in the air, here is a recent progress shot of them deconstructing their 747.

What we want to know is, how did they get planning permission?

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  1. […] It’s one thing to write about converting 747s into mansions but ultimately that’s only for an extremely wealthy minority. […]

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