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The EDGE packs a lot of home into a little house

By

July 27, 2010

The 320 square-foot EDGE house

The 320 square-foot EDGE house

Image Gallery (9 images)

If small is beautiful, then the 320 square-foot EDGE house from Wisconsin’s Revelations Architects is absolutely gorgeous. EDGE stands for Experimental Dwelling for a Greener Environment, and true to that acronym, the award-winning little modular home includes Earth-friendly features such as rainwater collection, geothermal heating and cooling, air-to-air heat recovery, passive solar windows, and insulated exterior shutter doors that minimize nighttime heat loss. Making the most of every square inch of interior space, the house has multi-functional transformable furniture, plus two overhead bedrooms. It's also made for easy construction and relocation, to the point that the prototype has been assembled, taken apart and moved three times in six months.

The EDGE’s basic layout is, like everything else about the dwelling, simple. Two prefabricated boxes which contain the mechanical areas, namely the kitchen and bathroom, sit at either end of the house. Between them is the central living space, while above each box is an 80 square-foot loft bedroom. The custom-made furniture in the living space can be transformed to accommodate eating, sleeping and socializing. The exterior rain screen and shutters are constructed from locally-grown white oak, while the interior is made from CNC-cut Baltic birch plywood. Essentially, everything was designed with economy of space, construction, and environmental impact in mind.

The highly space-efficient interior
The transformable living space furniture

It’s certainly no surprise that Revelations president Bill Yudchitz is a big fan of keeping things simple, and assessing what is really important in life. “The EDGE is about trying to have less,” he said. “We all have so much materialism, myself included, that the stuff gets in the way of life [and] our relationship with other people. The less we have the less time it takes to own it and the better chance we have of keeping it from owning us... is it spiritual to want to relate to the world without baggage? I think so!”

The prefabricated kitchen

Of course, not everyone could live their lives within 320 square feet. To that end, the EDGE is promoted as a full-time residence, or as a vacation retreat. And while you can buy one for $US60,000 to $150,000, the project is more about getting people to question over-consumption and excess than it is about selling houses. “I hope the EDGE concept has a future,” stated Yudchitz. “I hope that it becomes a point of learning for people to think smaller... now we step back and ask what does it really mean and what did we all learn from it.”

The EDGE house prototype is located at Checquamegon Bay in Bayfield, Wisconsin.

Via Tiny House Blog.

About the Author
Ben Coxworth An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.   All articles by Ben Coxworth
8 Comments

Great house, ideas, but why so expensive, $200/sq' is a joke. I can build similar for under $40/sq' including RE power for itself and an EV.

jerryd
28th July, 2010 @ 10:14 am PDT

The EDGE house is great, awesome in fact.

1 Thing I must comment on is the use of flouro lights in the hitchen.

Why not use LEDS.

John M
28th July, 2010 @ 10:48 am PDT

And I imagine that it is quite noisy in that house from both internal noise and external noise! Put this thing on a street corner and you won't get *ANY* sleep!

Ed
28th July, 2010 @ 03:40 pm PDT

it LOOKs cool, but doesn't seem to be that comfortable. Were are the cushions on the furniture.....?

Jason McMillion
30th July, 2010 @ 03:40 pm PDT

It's a neat idea, it has potential. But the price is indeed too steep, and the inside space is limited. The central table/bed blocks the entire living space. Better make it entirely collapsible and push it to the side, to create more room whenever needed. The two upper beds could be completely enclosed, for more privacy (and less noise).

The glass on both sides creates more sense of space, but other than that it not very practical. One side with glass would be sufficient to get the light and the passive heat in (facing it south). Thus, the opposite wall can be used for shelves, decorative items and niches for the collapsible furniture.

Ciprian Pacurar
6th August, 2011 @ 01:45 pm PDT

@jerryd - correct $200/sq ft is a joke. Manufactured home companies proclaim better quality control, more efficient use of materials, no waste at job site and lower costs! Where are the lower costs from these designs? I have not seem them.

Mark A
19th November, 2011 @ 07:08 am PST

I think that as population expansion continues, modular homes will begin to become increasingly popular. They are actually quite incredible, and I could honestly see myself living in one. I am interested to see how far they will go.

Facebook User
9th October, 2012 @ 05:18 pm PDT

@ JerryD & Mark A- Can you refer me to someone that can make something comparable to this home , but more affordable??

LDA
20th June, 2013 @ 10:24 am PDT
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