‘Open Up!’ is a co housing design set in Rome. Open Up! is communal living, yet it is approached from the standpoint of the individual. At the basis of this design is the notion that happy individuals together form a happy group. In order to create a happy individual within a high density setting, privacy is very important. Research shows that when people are in their ‘desired level of privacy’, people are much more likely to have positive social interaction.

The desired level of privacy means that people do neither feel too isolated nor too crowded. This desired level changes through time and circumstances. For example; sometimes you would prefer to eat alone, while at other times you would like to have a romantic dinner for two, or dine with a group. Since the desired level of privacy can vary for different activities and over the course of time, this design does not offer things like a shared kitchen or a communal living.

Instead, each individual has a private unit that holds all different functions. These functions then can be opened up towards more public area’s. This way the individual is in complete control to achieve their own desired level of privacy at all times. This ensures positive social interactions and limits social tensions that could occur in high density shared settings.