The tiny pod home can harvest all of its own energy and water—and it just officially launched in Times Square during NYCxDesign.
In 2009, Nice Architects entered a design competition to create a small house for an artist. Their submission didn’t end up winning the contest, but did garner international attention—and subsequently, public inquiries to purchase the design.
The technology wasn't quite there in 2009, but Nice Architects completed a 88-square-foot prototype five years later—and today, the self-sufficient Ecocapsule is finally available for purchase in the United States. To mark the debut, the company just installed an Ecocapsule in Times Square during NYCxDesign.The Ecocapsule is outfitted with rooftop solar panels and a wind turbine, and it stores energy in a high-capacity battery. It also has a plug to allow for external charging if needed. The tiny house can collect water from rain or a nearby river or lake, and then filter it to produce clean, drinkable water.
"At first, Ecocapsule was intended as a frontier dwelling," says the company, but its self-sufficiency and ease of transport makes it attractive for all kinds of off-grid uses, such as emergency response and disaster relief. In those cases, "The capsule can serve as a small power plant and water filtration unit," says the company.
50 limited-edition Ecocapsules are currently available for roughly $89,000 each. The company plans to offer a mass-produced series of pod homes later this year at a lower price point.