Interior and Living Areas

Flexibility Over Time

A central spine offers innovative flexibility in interior spaces. Adding or removing modules produces a wide variety of room options and sizes. This customization approach accommodates changing household compositions and sizes over time. Modular design ideas typically provide a customized interior at a relatively low cost for each new configuration. When discussing this option with clients, create graphics that illustrate different future configurations that communicate the value this strategy provides long-term. Be sure clients understand modular flexibility is not for daily adjustments, but rather provides options over many years as life events and lifestyle changes dictate.

This series of sample configurations shows layouts for different family sizes and life stages from a four-person family with young children continuing to a family with an older member and caregiver.


This is a complex solution that will require intensive planning and customization for each project, as there’s currently not a standard / manufactured equivalent. Plan for additional time in the project schedule for conceptualization and construction detailing. Despite the increased initial design costs, the incredible flexibility over the long-term may make this a particularly useful solution in multi-family housing buildings, such as apartment complexes or senior living.

How-to tip

Due to the customization required for each project, this system can be simple or complex making it very adaptable to a wide range of needs. Using modular dimensions and a gridded layout will likely simplify planning and reconfiguration. As always, be aware that a renovation of this intensity may require the removal of structural walls and the installation of load-carrying beams. New flooring may also be needed. Moveable furniture will be key to making this flexible design easier to convert between configurations.