In one of the earliest examples of prefabrication, Koch and two associates created the ‘Acorn House’ in 1947. It was designed to be assembled from parts in a single day, and then be able to be disassembled, so it could be transported easily to a new location.
Prototypes were built, but the design never caught on. It was speculated that there was pushback from local building officials and bankers.
Koch considered the pre-fab homes to be one of his greatest ideas and anticipated bringing comfort to millions. In 1949, the cost to build the structure was estimated at $4,500, with labor costs expected to be around $350. This particular venture was unsuccessful in reality.
After a number of false starts in housing design, in 1953, Koch’s "Techbuilt" housing system became a successful endeavor. Eventually he was able to expand his operation to 90 franchised "builder-dealers" using parts from 4 factories. It’s estimated that there were eventually more than 3000 Techbuilt houses in 32 states.
In the Techbuilt house, the post and beam system allows for the interior walls to be non-loadbearing. The design was combined with a variety of modular exterior wall panels, usually in 4' and 8' widths, allowing the buyer to easily customize the design.
This home was designed to offer flexibility to its residents. Due to its unique interchangeable design, homeowners can (& did!) change the floor plan. For example, the kitchen was once in the space where the living room was.
The open floor plan and many windows gives the home an expansive feel, while also providing tons of natural light and unparalleled views of the riverfront.
This home is currently listed for sale by agent Nancy Karas of Max Broock Realtors.