Foldable Home Can Be Installed in a Day

Living Room

Prefab homes are a great solution when looking to build fast, and now there is another awesome option to do so on the market.  The Italian architect Renato Vidal has recently unveiled a prefab foldable home, which can be installed in less than a day. The so-called M.A.Di home comes flat-packed and is built using sustainable materials and means, but designed with durability in mind.  It can also withstand earthquakes.

The M.A.Di home is made of CLT (cross laminated timber) and manufactured by wood specialist Area Legno in Italy. It is available in several sizes, namely a 290-sq ft (27-sq m) tiny home, a slightly larger 495-sq ft (46-sq m) home, a 603-sq ft (56-sq m) home, a family sized 753-sq ft (70-sq m) home, or an even larger family home of 904-sq ft (84-sq m).  All the models have two levels and have a kitchen, dining area and bathroom located on the ground level, and bedrooms on the upper level. The homes feature an A frame structure, which makes it easy to fold them for flat-packing and easy transport to the build site.

Exterior

Exterior

Bedroom

Living Room

The home features a steel profile and steel hinges, meaning that each module can be opened and closed with ease.  When closed and folded, the height of the package is just 4.9 ft (1.5 m), while opened, it measures 21.3 ft (6.5 ft) in height. All of the M.A.Di modules have galvanized steel frames which are designed to support the home’s opening and closing movement. The homes are waterproofed using Polyurethane foam, which also provides the thermal insulation. In addition to this, the walls are insulated using high-density rockwool, while the windows can either be PVC or aluminum.

The actual installation is very simple, since each module just unfolds up.  The home doesn’t need a foundation, since it can be anchored in place with a specially-designed screw pile system, which has virtually no impact so this home has a very tiny footprint.   The home can also be built on a reinforced concrete foundation, if so desired.

Large Module Plan

Single Module Plan

The home can be easily packed away, while it is possible to extend the existing home by adding new modules. It can also be designed according to passive house standards, while there is also the option of taking it off-the-grid by installing a solar power array, composting toilet, water tanks and a gray water system.

The price of this home is $933 (€800) per square meter, so the smallest home will cost about $25,195 (€21,600) and the largest $73,385 (€67,200).

The Millennial Tiny House is Full of Space Saving Ideas

The New Zealand firm Build Tiny recently completed a tiny home, which has some very innovative and effective space-saving features. This so-called Millennial Tiny House is also available to buy at various price points and is therefore accessible to those on a budget, as well as those who want a fully equipped home, which they can move into right away.

The Millennial Tiny House measures 23 by 7.8 ft (7.2 by 2.4 m) and rests atop a double-axle trailer, so it can easily be towed. Most of the interior space is taken up by the living/kitchen/dining area, while storage is located beneath the floor, which frees up the available space considerably. The downside of this is that a sofa or regular dining table would make this storage space hard to access, but this can be solved by fitting the home with movable furniture.

The home also features a unique and innovative sliding staircase, which leads to the sleeping loft above the living area. This staircase can be stored away when not needed, then pulled out from the wall to provide access to the loft. It’s made from poplar-plywood and has a lightweight aluminum frame. Next to this staircase is the bathroom, which is separated from the rest of the home by a sliding door. It is fitted with a sink, shower and a composting toilet on wheels, and there is also enough space here for a laundry area.

The home’s kitchen is also very generously sized, with enough room for a full-size fridge, a sink, a two-burner propane stove, a large counter and plenty of storage space. The home’s second loft is located above the kitchen and accessible via the kitchen counter and a ladder installed above it. This loft can be used as a home office or a second bedroom. The office already has a built-in desk, which is attached to the wall. There is also a footwell which uses a kitchen shelf to provide a comfortable sitting experience. This area also features some additional storage space. The home is also fitted with two large French doors which are located opposite each other to provide great ventilation, as well as flood the interior with natural light.

The Millennial Tiny House features a steel frame and Earthwool insulation in the ceiling and walls, while polystyrene was used for underfloor insulation. The cladding is Cedartech and treated steel, while the home features a typical RV-style hookup for power. The company also offers the optional solar power upgrade, which would make this dwelling independent of the grid.

The model pictured here is a prototype but the Millennial Tiny House is also already available to purchase. There are three pricing tiers, which start at $43,000 (59,750 NZD) for just the watertight shell, $65,500 (90,995 NZD) for the shell, along with all the plumbing, wiring and insulation, while the fully-fitted version can be purchased for $86,700 (120,500 NZD).

World’s Tallest Timber Tower Might Get Built in NYC

The New York City-based architecture firm DFA Studio recently turned in a proposal for an observation tower made of wood.  If built, the structure would be the tallest timber tower in the world, and would offer great views of NYC from its location in Central Park. In addition to that, it would also be used to filter the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir in the park, turning it into a freshwater pond which everyone could use.

The Central Park Tower, as it is named, would be made using mainly Glulam (glue-laminated timber). Structurally, it would feature a steel core, a complex wooden helix that would be wrapped in timber lattice, and a transparent PVC skin. It would be anchored on a concrete base with stabilizing cables. The tower would be 712 ft (217 m) high and would house shops and restaurants. Atop it, there would be an observation deck that will offer 360-degree views of the cityscape.

The tower would also have an integrated filtration system that would clean the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis Reservoir (also known as the Central Park Reservoir). Once the filtration process is complete, the reservoir would become a pond to be used for swimming, sailing and other water activities. Currently this reservoir sits stagnant and fenced off, and is considered a health threat to millions of New Yorkers, tourists and animals.

The filtration system would be housed in the steel core in the lower part of the tower. The needed power to run it would be great, but it would be all provided by a vertical axis wind turbine integrated into the tower. There are no figures to back up this claim as of yet.

The tower would be built using prefabricated construction methods, so DFA Studio believes that it could be completed in about six months. They also describe it as a “temporary” structure, so it would most likely have a limited lifespan.  We’ll have to wait and see if this proposal ever gets realized.

Fully Customizable Off-grid Tiny Home

Living Room

Since tiny homes are so small, the key to living in them comfortably is a clever interior layout. And this is best achieved when it is tailored to your specific needs.  Enter the so-called Kootenay tiny house built by the firm TruForm Tiny. Potential customers have a wide range of layouts, as well as size, materials, colors, and even furniture to choose from when ordering one.  The home is towable and can also be made to operate completely off-the-grid.

The Kootenay comes in three sizes, namely 20, 24, and 28 ft (6, 7.3, and 8.5 m) in length.  The model pictured in this post is the largest, 28 ft (8.5 m)-long one.  Its total floor space measures 379 sq ft (35.2 sq m) and it features a metal roof.  The exterior cladding comes in different colors and wood types, while the color of the roof, the style of the exterior and even the window frames can also be chosen by the customer.

Exterior Deck

Exterior Side

Sleeping Loft

The interior features a living area with a sofa, a kitchen with a well-sized breakfast bar, a small oven and plenty of cupboards and shelves.  There is also enough room for a washer/dryer, dishwasher, and full-size appliances, which can be purchased as optional extras.

The far end of the home is taken up by a relatively spacious bathroom, which features a full-size bathtub. The Kootenay has two lofts. The larger one is accessible via a set of stairs and is meant as the master bedroom, though the latter can also be installed on the ground level should the client wish so.  The second loft is accessible via a ladder, and can be used as a guest room, though it is perhaps more suitable as a storage area.   The home also features a drop down deck, which extends from the living area.

Kitchen

Breakfast Bar

Bathroom

The Kootenay can be connected to the grid via a standard RV-style hookup, but a custom off-grid package is also available. This includes a solar power array, a wood-burning stove, a composting toilet, and a propane-powered fridge.

The basic version of The Kootenay costs $57,900.

Tiny Home With a Flexible Interior

The recently completed Pacific Harmony tiny home, designed and built by the firm Handcrafted Movement, features superb craftsmanship and some unique interior layout ideas, which make it appear much more spacious than it is. This includes a bedroom, which can be turned into a dining room when needed.

The Pacific Harmony home is towable, and measures 28 ft (8.5 m) in length. The exterior cladding is board and batten, with accents made of Pacific Cedar, while the roof is standing seam metal. Much of the interior is taken up by the living room, which is placed in the center of the home and fitted with a sofa, and a large entertainment center. One of the bedrooms is also located on the ground level, next to the living room. It features a folding oak dining table, which can be folded out of the way when not needed so as to make room for the Murphy style bed.

Dining Area

Murphy Bed

Loft Bedroom

On the opposite side of the home is the kitchen, which features a propane-powered four-burner range cooker and a fridge/freezer. There is also a built-in breakfast bar, which can seat up to three people. The bathroom is adjacent to the kitchen and features a shower, sink and toilet. There is a sleeping loft above the kitchen, which is big enough for a double bed. It is accessible via a ladder which was made out of salvaged walnut. The flooring of the home is herringbone hardwood, while the countertops are made of quartz.

The tiny house gets its power via a standard RV-style hookup and has a propane-powered water heater. They also installed LED lighting throughout. There is also a small exterior deck, which is big enough for a table and chairs and needs to be taken off for traveling.

The Pacific Harmony is selling for $79,000.

Living Area

Kitchen