Minimal structures designed by a Lawrence, Massachusetts,
company are powerfully energy-efficient
Written by CHRISTIE MATHESON • Photography by DAVE HENDERSON
the founders of powerhouse enterprises didn’t
expect little pods to create such a big stir.
When Quincy Vale and his partner, architect John
Rossi, who launched their Lawrence, Massachusetts, company to
create modular prefabricated buildings, presented sketches of the
PowerPod concept at a trade show, they were meant to be a minor
attraction. But the compact size and streamlined design of these
one-module structures, which Vale and Rossi intended to serve as
basic vacation getaways, artists’ studios, pool houses, nanny quarters, home offices, or yoga studios, struck a chord: People wanted
them — and not just as secondary spaces. Customers requested
units for primary residences, too.
The pared-down and simple design of the PowerPod holds
obvious appeal for anyone in search of an anti-McMansion — or
anyone interested in reducing a personal carbon footprint. In
buildings this small (currently they come in 250-, 350-, and 450-
square-foot models), it’s easy being green.
The PowerPod below
features a butterfly roof.
A more traditional
gabled option, and a
third style with a simple
shed roof are also
The passive solar design
using the sun’s rays
while also allowing
maximum natural light
into the interior.
An insulated exterior
shell reduces heating
and cooling costs.