Small and tiny houses have been heralded as a possible solution for a lot of problems: from the lack of affordable housing, to addressing the climate emergency, as well as potentially encouraging better relationships (and more creative intimacy, of all things).
On top of all that, tiny houses can also function as a great educational tool. Over the years, we’ve seen a number of college and community-based skill training programs that involve students designing and building tiny homes for their local communities – contributing their time and labor for the greater good, while learning some useful construction skills along the way. Baltimore-based non-profit Civics Works is one of these community organizations that train young people in practical skills, and at the same time, builds affordable tiny homes for those who need it.
Designed as an energy-efficient home on wheels, The Clifton is built on top of a customized trailer and features a well-insulated shell to increase its energy efficiency. It can be fully or partially powered by solar panels, depending on the number of panels used. Any energy that’s collected by the solar panels during the day can be stored in its battery bank, so that it can be used later during the night.
The Clifton’s modern exterior is clad with black metal and cedar siding, giving it a cutting-edge look. Its prominent overhang provides some shelter while sitting out of doors, and it includes a fold-down deck that can conveniently swing down when the tiny house is parked, thus creating some extra outdoor porch space to enjoy.
Inside, this 200-square-foot tiny home has all the basics: a small kitchen on one end that is split between two sides; a sitting area; a table; a lofted sleeping area, and a bathroom.
The walls are clad with pine wood planks, and the lighter color palette – in both the walls and the cork flooring – helps to make the space seem much bigger. In addition, cork is a versatile, renewable material that is also durable and resistant to rot.

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