The concept

The Ophion is a medium-sized floating condominium complex which houses an inboard marina, parking for electric cars, and all of the amenities and comforts of a traditional condo. The Ophion does not have engine room, but maneuvers with bow thrusters which allow it to move in shallow waters during the week-ends.


The Background

Imagine a giant floating city, complete with shops and entertainment and tramways that whisk you from one side of the mighty craft to the other. Endeavours of this size are astronomically expensive and logistics necessary just to put it in the water would cause most ventures to fail.

Not so with the Ophion. Keeping the same concept by slimming it to a 30-condo building on water brings this vision to a plausible dimension. At this size, the Ophion would be large enough to host special events and draw world-wide attention, but it would be small enough to maneuver through most major ports in the world. During extreme weather, the Ophion could also be moved up the mouths of the great rivers to protect itself and the homes of its residents.


How it works

The Ophion is a massive floating vessel that houses 30 condos in a central tower, each fitted with a large private balcony. The entire lower area of the Ophion features an indoor boathouse where condo owner can station their boats. A private parking garage is located on the second floor along with storage space for each condo. The staff and mechanical systems are located on the third level, and to reduce complexity the ship is not equipped with an engine other than bow thrusters and a rudder since it is solely designed to be pushed or pulled by tugboats.

The middle floor consists of a pool and bar on one side and a large outdoor park on the opposite. Inside of the central complex are 3 floors of markets, shops, medical facilities, concierge, and even a small movie theatre.

The Ophion was designed to be stationed in the downtown harbour. It would be connected to the electrical grid and the city’s water supply and sewer system. During the week-end and/or holidays it could also pulled a little distance (5 minutes ride) off shore and anchored for a few days so the owners could benefit from a resort at sea and all the activities that comes with this.

A small electric taxi boat assigned to the Ophion would assume the logistic of transporting passengers to and from the Ophion when it would be parked offshore and an underwater electric cable could provide power to the ship during this period.


What it’s used for

Imagine if you could buy a condo that could offer you the advantages of being close to the city centre while giving you the opportunity to escape during the weekend? The Ophion brings this scenario to life in remarkable style. The design is versatile and can be reconfigured to house up to 1,000 smaller units instead of the more spacious and exclusive 30, or a combination of sizes and opportunities for those wishing for a unique living experience with all the benefits of living within arm’s reach of the city. There is also the possibility of a completely green design, with electric taxi boats and bow thrusters to reduce the impact on the environment but maintain the exclusive and exciting lifestyle of living on The Ophion.


The Designer

I would like to thank Ray Mattison from Design Eye-Q who created the renderings of the Ophion concept. Ray is based near Duluth Minnesota, USA. He studied at the College for Creative Studies, and he has worked for Cirrus Aircraft and Exodus Machines. Ray also created the images of the Mitzuchi ocean cleaning catamaran, the Icarus wingless aircraft, and the Aladin urban modular transit concept.