The British architecture firm ZED Factory came up with a clever concept for a solar-powered home, which would be installed over existing parking lots to build sustainable communities and help combat the urban housing shortage. The idea behind it is to utilize the space taken up by parking lots, which is often quite large.
Each ZED Pod, as this home is called (ZED stands for Zero fossil Energy Development) would have a floor space of 147 sq ft (13.64 sq m), but it would be a two-story home. The downstairs area would contain a living/dining space, kitchen and a bathroom, while the upstairs would house the bedroom and an office area. They would be installed over existing parking spaces on a metal frame, which would leave enough space for cars to park underneath it and be sturdy enough to support the tiny homes. The pods would be fully prefabricated in a factory then assembled on site. According to the company, one such ZED Pod community could be constructed in just a week, while it could also be disassembled and relocated with relative ease if the need arose.
ZED factory envisions a whole community of such homes over a single parking lot, which would also feature a shared community space and an additional raised amenity area that could be used as an allotment.
The ZED pods would be fitted with solar panels, a heat recovery ventilation system, a green roof, composting toilet, and a grey water recycling system, which means that they would be able to operate completely off-the-grid. The surplus of energy produced by the solar panels could also be used to charge electric cars.
The ZED Pod would cost around $85,931 (Â£60,000), which includes installation. They would rent them out for roughly $1,074 (Â£750) per month, which includes all the utility bills.
ZED factory is currently in talks with the Oxford City Council about securing space for testing a community of about 50 ZED Pods. Since theyâ€™re so eager to build this community they have offered to do so with no cost to the council. It will definitely be interested to follow this project if it goes ahead.