'Smart' micro-housing for Swedish students gets high marks in affordability I’ve previously taken a look at concepts that explore how parking garages can be harnessed to provide pint-sized housing in increasingly cramped cities. Now, a team of students and faculty from the Savannah College of Art and Design are transforming the starry-eyed notion of living where you park into a reality as part of a game-changing initiative that marries adaptive reuse with innovative tiny house building of the highest order.

Due to officially launch this Wednesday atop a midcentury parking deck on SCAD’s satellite campus in Midtown Atlanta, the SCADpad project brought together more than 75 students from various academic departments in the collaborative creation of a trio of tricked-out prototype tiny houses. Each SCADpad unit is roughly the size of a single parking spot (135-square-feet) and each sports an array of sustainable features. It’s an apropos locale if there ever was one given the car-centric nature of Atlanta, a sprawling metropolis where many residents truly do live in their cars.SCADPad design

Starting in mid-April, select SCAD students will move into these next-gen tiny houses for residencies and, as SCADPad ambassadors, they’ll document the experience through blogs, tweets, and the like. “In doing so, they’ll be part of the larger conversation on sustainable living and urbanism in the 21st century,” explains the SCADPad website.

And later this week, yours truly will also be moving on into a SCADpad unit for one night ... so do keep an eye out for follow-up posts and live tweets from inside my temporary tiny digs. In these posts and tweets, I’ll be highlighting more innovative features of the units themselves and sharing insights from the SCADpad team members. In the meantime, be sure to check out the videos embedded below that intro the project.

Sheila Edwards, professor of furniture design, speaks to the role that the tiny house movement had in influencing the design of the SCADpads in the second video: "I think they've [the SCAD students involved with the project] been inspired by the conviction of the tiny house movement, in general. They feel compelled to honor that movement and the principles by bringing as much to the design as possible."

Although I’ve had my fair share of experiences being holed up in pint-sized rural cabins (and decidedly non-spacious urban apartments), this will be my first sleepover in a disused parking structure in the middle of Atlanta. Kind of sounds like the premise for a urbanism-themed horror movie, right?

I think I’m in for a real treat.

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

SCADpads: Student-designed tiny houses that fit snugly into a parking spot
SCADpad, an exploration of how micro-housing can benefit increasingly overcrowded cities, launches this week in Atlanta.