MIT Media Lab’s Changing Places team has created a futuristic device that could make your tiny apartment feel more like a spacious penthouse. Introducing CityHome, a motorized and compact “home in a box” that can make a 200 square foot space feel like a room three times larger. Equipped with built-in sensors, motors, and LED lights, this multipurpose invention will even expand and collapse with a wave of your hand or the sound of your voice.
So what’s inside this magical “home in a box?” The CityHome fits a bed, a workspace, a dining table for six, a kitchen counter, a stovetop, and a multipurpose storage space all within a large closet-sized module. Built atop low-friction rollers, the mechanical box easily slides around your apartment, and its interior spaces can be expanded or shrunk as needed. Using ‘Minority Report’-like technology, this futuristic invention responds to gestures, touch, and voice commands.
Although CityHome is still a prototype, lead researcher Kent Larson has told Co.Design that the team intends to bring the product to market, either through crowdfunding or a commercial sponsor. “This would work well in the 30 to 40 Innovation Cities where young people are priced out of the market,” Larson explains. “At $1,000 per square foot in Boston, the extra cost of technology is trivial compared to space saved for a furnished apartment.”