Photo: Courtesy of Co.Exist.
It's a running joke that New York City apartments are closets — sometimes even shoe boxes. We urban dwellers have assimilated to the shrinking square-footage environment in a forever-increasing-rent epidemic. Yet, ask your everyday New Yorker if they could live in a 182 square-foot apartment, and you'd probably get scoffed at, some eye rolling, and a blunt "No!" Ask Steve Sauer, however, and he'll unflinchingly tell you it's doable.
Thanks to *faircompanies, Sauer's new way of living has entered into the conversation of microapartments. He told Co.Exist that while hunting for storage space, the engineer found a co-op building filled with the potential for experimental living. Six years later, Sauer has successfully converted an 8-foot tall, 16-by-11-foot-and-some-odd-inch room into a 10-foot-tall, three-level interior.
Complete with a working kitchen, shower and bath, toilet, lofted bed, and living room, Sauer's packed more into his home than some Manhattan shoe boxes. All right, so "living room" might be a stretch, but there is a space for relaxing and a space for office work. "I have essentially every little kind of work space that I need," he says. "Each one is really comfortable.”
Pico-living, as he calls it, downsizes the microapartment trend that's cropped up in areas like New York's Soho neighborhood and Japan. It's a trend that Sauer hopes will eventually catch on and inspire developers, designers, and architects to think bigger by thinking smaller. “The world has always seen luxury as big, especially in America,” he explains. “I just get a kick out of using the smallest thing I can to get somewhere, pushing those engineering limits.” And, also pushing our limits of comfort and consumption, but those are topics too big to fit here, let alone 182 square feet. (Co.Exist)