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Pittsburgh incremental house: affordable home expands with owner

“While we have, in Pittsburgh, autonomous vehicles driving around the city, we’re still building homes with a hammer and a nail.” Brian Gaudio’s company Module is building homes in a factory using modern tech like CNC cutting and nailing machines to produce custom-designed, energy-efficient homes for the average consumer.

Given that the majority of American households have 1 or 2 people, Gaudio wants to right-size housing, building smaller starter homes that can be added onto as a family grows. With a patented wall and roof system, the home can be opened up to add stairs and a second story recycling the same roof and wall.

Inspired by the concept of incremental housing- low-rise high-density developments built in South American cities with the possibility of expansion (Gaudio created the documentary “Within Formal Cities” with Abe Drechsler on the topic), Gaudio moved home to his parents’ home in Pittsburgh tailor the idea to the U.S.

Module’s first home was built for a couple who wanted an in-law unit for their parents’ to move into when necessary. Over the course of just two days, the wall and roof panels (manufactured by Bensonwood in Keene, NH) were erected in a LEGO-like assembly process by crane. Gaudio hopes that this process can be replicated with thousands of homes to actually make a dent in the national housing crisis.

[* Filming credits
Factory footage: Bensonwood Homes
South American footage: “Within Formal Cities” — Abe Drechsler and Brian Gaudio
Pittsburgh open shots: Johnny Sanphillipo of Granola Shotgun ]