Re-Thinking Small

20Oct12

Opinionator @NYTimes by Allison Arieff

In cities where space is at a mind-boggling premium, McCormick’s idea of taking up residence in a parking space — in what he refers to as a “Houselet” — isn’t all that far-fetched. It may in fact be more appealing than the so-called “hacker hostels” that got a lot of buzz earlier this summer. Essentially apartments that house herds of would-be startup entrepreneurs willing to pay market rate to live in near-migrant-worker conditions, hacker hostels are proliferating in cities like San Francisco and New York where work culture calls for 24/7 commitments and lots of food-truck takeout (which no doubt inspired upLIFT’s prefab parking pods for the city).

These apartments are less living spaces than crash pads with a social networking component.

PARKing Day has become a global phenomenon, urging us to look at other ways we might use parking spaces (like for this mini-golf course at SPUR in September). Some believe there is no reason they can't be developed for housing.Sergio RuizPARKing Day has become a global phenomenon, urging us to look at other ways we might use parking spaces (like for this mini-golf course at SPUR in September). Some believe there is no reason they can’t be developed for housing.

They do fit a particular market need, however, which is more than a lot of housing options can lay claim to. Is collaborative space the new urban amenity, replacing the granite counter top or Viking range? Perhaps. Savvy developers see a market — namely, people’s attraction to what’s outside a dwelling as much as, if not more than, what’s in it — and are trying to fill it.

Read the full article here

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