MIT’s Line of Fully Automated 200-Square-Foot Apartments Is on the Market

It's like a closet. But a really, really livable closet.

July 12, 2016 9:00 am

Updated 6 June 2017

About a year ago, we told you about an MIT-designed apartment-in-a-box that could fit in a 200-square-foot space.

It took about a year, but we’ve finally learned another important number: it starts at $10,000.

Now available in major cities like Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, Chicago and NYC, the Ori system seamlessly converts into an office, bedroom or living room at the touch of a button.


Although real estate developers are the only people who can currently preorder the system, you can stay informed about when the Ori will be available to us regular folk by signing up here.


More people in smaller quarters means that designers are now rebuilding your apartment from the ground up.

One of the newest concepts: Ori — a reference to “origami,” presumably because they’re making things that used to be big into smaller, odder, slightly more ridiculous things — the outgrowth of a research project at MIT Media Lab.

ORI Update (3 images)

Five students there created CityLab, a prototype for a seriously tiny apartment. The team tested a concept space that, at the flip of a literal switch, can morph into a room for sleeping, leisure or eating.

Need to see it to believe? You can (er, you could) because the apartments were briefly on the actual market in Boston, renting via Airbnb. Feedback from that test run informed a refined version, which was further finessed (and humanized — more wood, fewer synthetics) by S.F. designer Yves Béhar.

Now, the team is taking their project to market: to real estate developers, hotel brands and even consumers.

So start clearing out space in your place. You won’t need much.

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