Wanted common area for people, not cars. Built a Pocket Hood

On an empty lot next door to a popular craft brewery, the Blockhouse team wanted to housing that would fit a buzzing Spokane (WA) neighborhood. They carefully placed micro and skinny units around some old-growth trees to create a pocket neighborhood (interior gathering spaces for the community), leaving just a few parking spaces at the ’s edge.

The Blockhouses were partially prefabbed – making it easier to save the trees – from cross-laminated timber (CLT) that serves as both structure and interior cladding. The wood, sourced from small-diameter and sometimes diseased or dead trees, helps to clear the local national forest for forest fires.

They covered the entire roof of with solar panels in order to achieve -zero status. Each of the eight units – from the 960-square-foot skinny homes to the 260-square-foot micro studios – has a smart wall that helps to control climate based on use and weather conditions.


On *faircompanies: https://faircompanies.com/videos/wanted-common-area-for-people-not-cars-built-a-pocket-hood/


  1. I’m a country dweller but I really like the style of these buildings and layout. The grounds are wonderful with the mature trees and oasis feel. All the wood really give the complex and earthy feel. I can see people being very happy to live there.

  2. What is the point of using that CLT? what is wrong with traditional stick frame that uses so much less wood, or other methods? yes its nice to touch the wood but if you want to touch the wood just use wood instead of drywall?? CLT is usually used as beams or as panels instead of concrete and steel in multistory buildings that weigh a lot but these are not that. I’m not trying to be negative here, but he just sounds pretentious and is preaching like he discovered something profound. I would understand if it was a one step solution but they still have to use siding. What is good is that its in a good area and they were able to create spaces that are communal and saved trees.

  3. Really nice concept! I could see this type of project in my college town, San Luis Obispo CA, which lends itself to this type of innovative housing. These would also make great off-campus student housing units.

  4. I was gonna mention “uuh, too bad theres no renewable energy production included”, but then he shows the PV farm on the neighbors roof which is a great way. In fact, most people or companies dont even think about this opportunity.

    What still bothers me is, that he calls the inhabitants “guests”. Now I dont really now about the US, but in Europe this is kind of a chiffre for super high rental cost and bad overall rental conditions because people arent really tenants and thus dont have the same rights.

  5. This is a great idea, looks very cool and seems really sustainable with the CLT…..I wonder how it is insulated? There was no mention of this, and it’s normally a big topic….. does the CLT keep it insulated? Grateful if anyone knows, other than this it seems like a fantastic project 👌👍

  6. Contrary to how you attempt to justify it, cubism in home or commercial construction basically looks like crap. No appeasing style, no feng shui, just harsh ninety degree corners at every turn. The only reason contractors or developers like the box is because it is cheaper to build so this helps maximize profits.

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