The Flax Works

Hewin, Rizzle + Baise

Perceived as eyesores, open mosaic habitats found on brownfield sites fall victim to low-quality overpriced housing developments. Such habitats are scarce; and can be home to rare and declining species increasingly displaced by humans. The Flax Works is a housing scheme that embraces multi-species habitation through retrofitting the post-industrial ecology of Anniesland Gasometers in Glasgow. The landscape freely expresses itself in multitudes; transforming the site into an urban wild for human and non-human cohabitation. The gasometers are retrofitted with human homes, solar panels, bird and bat boxes providing opportunity for an assemblage of life to thrive.

The homes are designed with a breathable construction consisting of Scottish Brettstapel, flax and responsibly sourced lime, creating healthy, affordable and energy efficient homes. By generating a demand for local flax, this design participates in a fibreshed; encouraging local circular economies from soil to soil. Flax will be grown on-site supporting seed adaptation to the Scottish climate.

To accommodate for a range of human lifestyles, the layout of the units are highly customisable. The form of the gasometers inspired the modular housing segments, enhancing construction efficiency and increasing affordability. Housing will carefully be in phases, allowing grassland habitats to establish and for the residential community to shape communal spaces. Allotments and raised beds encourage residents to gather and grow local produce together. Solar energy and water recycling across the site supports sustainable low-cost living. The Flax works is designed as a place to live, where all life thrives.

Louis Wiszniewski, Architect

Hamshya Rajkumar, Artist, Seed Librarian & Radical Botanist

Jamie Mack, Architect