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2019: Pathways for Lifecycle Building Practices: Material Reuse in Tiny Home Construction

Co-Learning Plan - 2019

Authors: Michael Moreno-Beals and Nathaniel Hooper, Private Consultants


Michael Moreno and Nathaniel Hooper researched the efficacy of using Tiny Homes to meet the affordable housing needs of Michigan communities, and how innovative building practices can mitigate some of the negative environmental impacts of these structures. This project compared the social, economic, and environmental impacts of building Tiny Homes using a Domicological approach versus traditional building methods. The aim of this project was to provide economic and community developers an insight into how life-cycle design practices can empower Michigan communities to transform abandoned structures into affordable Tiny Homes.

Author Information

Michael Moreno-Beals, Private Consultant

Michael Moreno was raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan and attended Rudolf Steiner and Pioneer High School before receiving his bachelor's degree in physics from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Since graduating in 2015, Michael has helped launch a food truck in South Carolina, volunteered and sits on the Board of the Lansing Bike Co-op, worked for a non-profit in Grand Ledge that provides environmental updates for manufactured homes, and co-founded a tree care company in Lansing. Michael is currently pursuing research into Tiny Homes as a means of providing affordable housing while minimizing the negative and maximizing the positive environmental, social, and financial impacts for both producers and consumers alike. He is also employed full time as a power line clearance arborist for Asplundh Tree Expert Co.

Nathaniel Hooper, Private Consultant

Nathaniel Hooper graduated from Michigan State University with a bachelor's in social work in 2017, and is a spring 2019 candidate for an MSW specializing in organization and community leadership. While working towards his bachelor's degree, Nathaniel worked as a direct care worker for Gateway Youth Services. Upon graduation, he transitioned to working in foster care and adoption for Child and Family Charities. Nathaniel currently works for the MSU Center for Community and Economic Development as a Domicology research assistant and sits on the Board of the Lansing Bike Co-op. In addition, he has worked as a consultant for the Berghorn Group.

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