PBS NewsHour Weekend’s feature on Micro-housing detailed the rise of tiny homes in big cities. What used to be a single-room occupancy (SRO) building in Vancouver, Canada, has been recast as tiny apartments that bend and fold like origami to create living, dining, sleeping, bathing and a little storage in only 260 square feet.
You can see for yourself as Shawn Groff, a 26-year-old working at Whole Foods, demonstrates how his dining table folds up and then down so that the Murphy bed can swing out from the wall. His coffee table rolls and doubles as a bench.
Critics decry the loss of affordable housing for cities’ neediest populations. Fans praise small units that meet the housing needs of workers challenged to find affordable living space in big cities like Boston, Cleveland, New York, Providence, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C. And everyone wonders will this trend last? The pro arguments: The number of people living by themselves has gone from 10 percent to 30 percent of the population. People now keep much of their life in the cloud. They read books on e-readers, keep financial records and bills paid online and use laptops and tablets not desktop computers. Less really can be more.