Sustainable Empowerment and Educational Development (SEED) Village


We’re very excited to introduce our latest project: the Sustainable Empowerment and Educational Development (SEED) Village, composed of up to 30 residential units organized into clusters of about 10 units in addition to the SEED Center. This artist-maker community village will be an open system, evolving and adapting with its community, fostering a culture of creativity and diversity.

Project Mission

We’ve partnered up with Youth Spirit Artworks (YSA), who created the Tiny House Empowerment Village (THEV), the world’s first tiny house village for formerly unhoused youth of ages 18-25 located in Oakland, California. The second village, SEED village, as mentioned earlier, is meant to be a temporary living space for formerly unhoused youth. Our entry for Solar Decathlon 2023 involves building a center for this village: an artist-maker community center, filled with equipment and resources that help develop the youth’s practical skills as well as house a live-in professional who will conduct workshops for the youth.

With a holistic approach to community engagement that concretely provides practical solutions to the global issues of climate change, unequal resource distribution, and houselessness, SHAC aims to connect our local communities with intersectional movements and causes for positive change. We hope our village can inspire others to a grander scale, demonstrating the power of human-focused design.

Open Systems

The SEED Village is conceived as an open system, a space that evolves and adapts along with its community both within and outside of the village itself. Its artist-maker space, accessible patios and outdoor gardens, dining and lounging areas, and other shared spaces all facilitate among its residents a culture and activity of creation as a celebration of difference. Each structure is composed of modules that can be disassembled and reassembled for ease of transportation, reconfiguration, and stacking. The Village Management System (VMS) is an IoT and building control platform developed by students using open source hardware, software, and communication protocols that integrates emerging technologies for recycling, sensing, and energy management. 

Closed Systems

The open system of the SEED Village creates and is created by closed loops, flows of people and desires, materials and information. The residents themselves will play a crucial role in empowering their own community to concretely address houselessness and climate change in the Bay Area, connecting to the public through the arts and creative making while learning about ongoing issues in sustainability. Every structure will be constructed from materials with low embodied carbon, chosen through life cycle analyses that consider manufacturing emissions and recyclability, and the construction process is being modeled to lower costs and emissions.

SHAC is an interdisciplinary group of undergraduate and graduate students at UC Berkeley with a shared passion for sustainability in the built environment.

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