These Solar Powered Houseboats Are Made For Rising Sea Levels

Could we see towns of houseboats in the future?

Some wealthy residents of Miami are bearing down for sea level rise with luxury, floating apartments.

The Miami Herald first reported on Arkup, a floating house equipped with hydraulic pilings that stabilize the house and solar panels that help power it. With the pilings, the luxury houseboat can be lifted above water and stabilize itself during hurricane surges.

"It's more like a house than a boat but you never lose the unmistakable feeling that you're on the water," Nicolas Derouin, managing director of Arkup, told The Miami Herald.


By 2030, sea level rise around Miami is expected to hit between six and 12 inches, enough to disrupt thousands of homes along the coastline. Climate change experts believe South Florida is one of the highest risk places for sea level rise. According to CBS Miami, much of South Florida could be submerged by water in 2100. The creators behind Arkup named it after Noah's Ark, a nod to the biblical floods that once destroyed most living things on the planet. It's a self-sustainable home designed with water collection tools to match its solar panels and hydraulic powered stilts. 

Arkup was designed by two French engineers, Derouin and Arnaud Luguet, who said they were inspired by seeing the real-time impacts of climate change. 

"It is happening before our eyes," Derouin told the Miami Herald. "Coastal areas are the most desirable but also the most at risk. Miami is implementing resiliency measures. We hope Arkup can be a small part of the solution."

With a $5.5 million price tag, the Arkup homes are only a viable solution for Miami's wealthiest residents. But they are just a first step. Derouin says they want to design a fleet of cheaper, well-designed and more basic houseboats for students and families. 


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