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Designing a Micro-Apartment, by William O'Shea

Guide Entry to 13.03.05:

The population of the world is growing exponentially. The United States Census Bureau projects the population of the United States to increase more than 25% over the next 37 years. The City of New Haven, like the City of New York, is likely to experience substantial population expansion. Will these two great American cities benefit from this growth or experience it as a burden? How will we house the future urban dwellers of America? What benefits are to be gained from this migration to the city?

Students at New Haven Academy are looking at one possibility. In a new course, "The Design Process," students are designing and constructing models of Micro-Apartments to address the anticipated densification of New Haven. Are there energy benefits to be realized?

In this unit, students will develop the skills necessary to meet a Micro-Apartment design challenge much like the challenge Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York City, proposed in 2012; to design a very small apartment that can house one or two people that conserves space and harnesses the benefits of increased urban density living.

(Recommended for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics, grades 9-12)

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