Japan: Micro-Homes in the Big City

Houses designed to fit on postage-stamp-sized plots offer Japanese an affordable way to live in bustling, crowded, and hugely expensive downtown areas

Small has always been beautiful in Japan, whether you think of the mini-component audio systems the country pioneered in the 1970s, its cultural love affair with miniaturized potted plants known as bonsai, or the current rage for small-engine mini-cars. Now you can add to the list the current home-design craze: ultra-compact micro-homes on plots so small they could fit into the garage space of your typical, sprawling McMansion in the U.S.

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