A dead mall in Providence, RI, has been repurposed into micro-apartments ranging from 225-300 square feet. The three-story building houses boutique shops on the bottom floor and 38 micro apartments on the upper floors. There are over 4,000 hopeful tenants on the waiting list for the $550/mo apartments, a steal considering Rhode Island is in the Top 20 most expensive hosing markets.
My interest in tiny houses stems from their efficient use and thoughtful design of built space. However, as an urban planner, I struggle with the inefficient use of land that I find comes along with tiny houses, and would like to see the concept translated into apartments. Currently, the minimum square footage for an apartment is about 400 sqft, though some cities (see link below) allow smaller ones. As housing becomes less affordable and land prices increase, we need to find creative ways to accommodate lower-income earners such as students, retirees, and other wage-earners.