The homeless are everywhere, even in tidy Japan, where many have developed ingenious houses that quickly fold away and can be easily rebuilt after police raids. Some of them are quite elegant, with tatami mats and bonsai shrubs. Architect Kyohei Sakaguchi has been studying and documenting them, publishing 0 Yen Houses in 2004. ""These homes embody simplicity, functionality and are at one with their environment, like the tea house of Rikyu Sen," referring to a 16th-century tea master who preached frugality through the Japanese art of tea ceremony. "I don't want to idealize the situation homeless people find themselves in," he said. "But in a world where most of us live in mass-produced, concrete boxes, Zero Yen Houses are precious works of art. They deserve to be recognized." ::0 Yen Houses (Japanese) and read Hiroko Tabuchi's ::Associated Press article and older article from the ::Times Online
Architect Sakaguchi appears also to have found a solar powered house here- we apologise for the poor google autotranslation. link to original text here for those reading Japanese.
This house stands in the corner Tagawa paralleling. At first glance, like the blue seat house which does not have many bizarre it is visible, but when it keeps seeing carefully, this house everything it understood as the way of the house of new age that it has necessary ones. As for this house, as for power source it is provided by all solar batteries. Storing the energy which it waited is stored in the battery for one time automobile. He with this power source, the television and the radio, uses the cassette player. The size of the house, it seems like equivalent of one tatami mats, but to tell the truth, not being 90 cm× 180 cm, 40 cm extending, 90 cm× 220 cm it has reached the size which is said. As for the size with the person who lives being proper to be different, as for him being yourself, being possible, you do not use wasteful power and obtain the effect of the maximum naturally in the minimum space. Furthermore, as for this house it is possible, to divide into 3 of the stock parts under the roof, the living room and the floor, it is possible to be able to point to movement easily. The material of all houses does the mono empty it picks up with road surface, just they are 0 Yen. One one part, looks with that idea, is diverted in the window and the door and the roof et cetera. Recycling the non consciousness! Being recorded before the fourth cover " of 0 Yen house " of next month sale schedule in detail, it increases the details in this plan. Necessary seeing!