Elevate Structure Shaped Like Tree Harvests Rainwater - Tiny House Blog

Elevate Structure Shaped Like Tree Harvests Rainwater

Looking more like something out of the Shire or the Forest Moon of Endor, the Elevate Structure is one group’s concept for sustainable housing in tropical places around the world. The Elevate is a 16×16 square foot studio sitting on a 40 square foot pedestal with living walls and solar panels that provide clean air and retain water.


Inspired by Hawaii’s natural beauty, Elevate founders Tiffany and Nathan Toothman set out to create these innovative structures to help care for the environment and people. They used a tree as their inspiration and the walls can hold oxygen producing plants or edibles.

The Elevate is prefabbed offsite and can be installed in several weeks. The foundations are made from micropiles and spot footers that take up less ground space and create less site work. The structures are permanent, but they can be unbolted from their foundation and transported.


The main structure is designed to harvest and store up to 1,500 gallons of rainwater in tanks located in the pedestal foundation. Water is also stored in tanks below the floor joists. The Elevate also has solar panels on the roof and between the lush living walls and makes the little home totally off-grid.



The main living area is 250 square feet and the rooftop space is another 250 square feet. The largest Elevate planned is 400 square feet, but the separate units can be combined or connected by a walkway. Tiffany and Nathan envision the structure being used for residential homes, accessory dwelling units, and commercial purposes. The structures will be sold for between $75,000 and $125,000 depending on amenities and interior options.


Photos by Elevate Structure

By Christina Nellemann for the [Tiny House Blog]

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Carol - October 13, 2015 Reply

Love this idea! I would totally do this! This could work great! I don’t know if it would work great for southern Ontario but awesome! I wonder if the 5×8 footprint would work for no permit? Love the Tree!

Benjamin - October 14, 2015 Reply

Looks a little scary for California. I wouldn’t want to be in there during an earthquake. Also, it might not be ideal for our current drought. It could take a lot of water to water your house.

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