But another university group has been focusing on designing small houses with a much, much lower price tag. That’s the Rural Studio at Auburn University.
The Rural Studio is a long-running design-build program that does most of its work in rural Hale County, Alabama. The Rural Studio’s 20K House project has produced a series of houses, twelve so far, so named because they’re designed to be built for $20,000. While some have met this budget and others haven’t, they are all interesting examples of simple but well-designed dwellings.
Take, for example, the Roundwood House. Its designers wanted to explore building applications for “thinnings”, small-diameter timbers that are removed to encourage forest health but are too small to be milled into conventional lumber.
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