Solo parenting is not well provided for in housing design.

Traditionally, children were raised by extended families in large houses with many relations.

The Quad House was a design that came out of a dialogue with a group of Waiheke solo mums.

  • The building consists of four blocks around a central enclosed courtyard.
  • The only access to the courtyard is from the homes.
  • Each home's ground floor has a large bifold door that fully opens onto the courtyard
  • The courtyard has a retractable awning to provide some rain and sun protection
  • Each block is privately owned in unit title
  • They felt comfortable with their living space being semi-private, but wanted the kitchen & bedroom private
  • They also felt very comfortable inviting elders to live in one of the quad blocks; surrogate grandparents

The quad house saves on land costs, but requires the Council think laterally. Technically, it consists of four dwellings on a single section. It is socially and culturally beneficial, but conceptually is closer to Kainga style living than the traditional Kiwi quarter-acre section.