This is such a cool project. The Atlanta location of SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design) has completed three prototype housing units inside a parking deck in its Midtown campus and students are set to move in this month. Above is the view from one of the micro apartments, as posted on the SCAD Twitter account.
An article on Next City has the info. Here’s a quote:
The 135-square-foot micro-apartments each take up one parking space, with an additional space for use as a “terrace” (seriously!), and were designed by 75 current SCAD students, 37 alumni and 12 professors. A dozen students will move into the apartments on April 15.
Are parking decks an untapped platform for new housing? It’s an interesting concept. Studies show that parking decks nationwide are operating at half capacity, and many are centrally located in cities. It’s an idea with big potential for adaptively reusing car infrastructure for housing people in urban areas.
The drawback is zoning laws that would need to be changed to allow for permanent residences in current parking decks. These prototypes at SCAD were able to receive special zoning permits, but they won’t last long:
They aren’t, at least for now, permanent dwellings: The students will only shack up in SCADpads until June, and even then each will only stay there for a week at a time.
Nonetheless, it’s exciting to see this kind of innovation happening in Atlanta. If it gains traction and zoning hurdles can be overcome, I can suggest a buttload of often-empty parking decks downtown that could stand to be adaptively reused.