LA Tackling Housing Crisis Through Backyard Tiny Homes

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Robison Wells
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Los Angeles, one of the largest metropolitan areas in the world, faces a massive housing shortage. Many people live in wooden barracks. The Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety plans to react to their crisis by launching the Accessory Dwelling Unit Standard Plan Program. Based on a 2017 statewide law, their directive enables the city to approve the construction of tens of thousands of “high-design, minimal dwellings” in-home backyards throughout the city.

Although the backyard dwellings have been technically legal since 2017, this new initiative cuts much of the red tape, freeing the city to work with several architecture firms to settle on a handful of tiny home designs. Vetting and approving plans speeds the process and eases permit acquisition. Some estimate a 33% cut in construction time.

City officials see tiny homes as an ideal solution to the housing crisis. Many homes in the Los Angeles area have unused mid to large-sized yards. Homeowners will gain an extra income while increasing the density of LA’s population; this comes without the need to build large public housing projects—the city’s usual strategy.

To top things off, most of the home designs utilize forward-thinking ideas, with an eye toward form and function, aiming to make the homes attractive and intelligent.

In Los Angeles, a city facing an ongoing housing shortage, backyard tiny homes might become a viable solution for wooden barracks housing.

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