Between now and 2040, half of all new housing demand will be for attached homes and the other half will be for small lot homes. Demand for all other housing types will decline.
- Reshaping Metropolitan America, Arthur C. Nelson
A steel arch building system, commonly used for agricultural and industrial buildings, is adapted to make small lot houses and row houses. By reconfiguring the standard panels, each house is given a distinct form. Unlike a modern kit-of-parts strategy, where a house is customized by arranging panels within a modular frame, these houses are customized by assembling a limited set of panels in various sequences to make unique profiles. Because the panels are mass produced in existing factories across the US, capital costs that are typically associated with manufactured housing are avoided. Construction is inexpensive, even for short production runs or individual houses. The approach is a logical fit for infill projects, which usually cost more per square foot than large, consolidated developments.
Each house is made of two steel shells, with space between them for insulation, plumbing, and electrical systems. Because each shell is self structured, the gap between them can be adjusted to create mechanical space and storage, or to divide rooms. Recessed end walls create porches that can be used as outdoor kitchens, bathrooms, and living rooms.