This tiny low-cost, low-impact home can pop up in practically any backyard. Students and faculty at UCLA's CityLAB created the semi-permanent housing solution to offer additional living quarters "for an elderly parent, a returning college graduate, or a rental unit." The BI(h)OME consists of a bedroom, kitchen, living room, bathroom and dining room wrapped in a translucent envelope.
The prototype was designed as a response to the LA mayor’s call for 100,000 new residential units to be built by 2021. In addition to its low environmental impact and small footprint, BI(h)OME is as flexible as they come–it can be leased like a car and the owners can easily dismantle the structures once they’re no longer needed.
The structure has a steel pipe frame and timber walls. Its exterior is clad in a two-layer skin made up of translucent ETFE wrapped around a honeycomb formation of paper cylinders. The house can be outfitted with solar panels and energy-efficient LED lighting. It has a composting toilet and a water supply based on a simple hose. According to the design team, the house has up to 100 times lower environmental impact compared to conventional auxiliary dwellings.
Photos by Nico Marques/Photekt