What if all people had access to attractive public spaces where they can gather, connect, shop, meet, and play? What if all communities had accessible and low ­cost tools to help them create those vibrant and engaging places?

Tactical urbanism or pop­up design demonstrations are rapidly revolutionizing planning, design and livability across the country. From pop­up bike lanes to parklets, these temporary and low cost installations can help communities make smart and effective investments in infrastructure while bringing life and energy to public spaces.

Meet Tiny Wonderful

We have a solution to bring popup design to communities throughout Colorado, and yes it is a tiny house on wheels! Tiny Wonderful allows us to bring pop­up designs for parks and playgrounds, public spaces and bike/pedestrian infrastructure to communities to test and refine designs before making permanent investments, while also giving residents the power to experiment and help refine designs.

But pop­up design is not yet equitable: it is still most commonly used in urban communities or neighborhoods with significant resources and capacity, and with clear knowledge of the field.

What is Tiny Wonderful?

Tiny Wonderful is a portable placemaking trailer and library used to bring affordable and user ­friendly pop­up tools to communities throughout Colorado.

Tiny Wonderful will allow us to expand the reach of pop­up demonstrations, ensuring that these powerful tools are available to rural areas, underserved neighborhoods and other communities that may not be able to afford or design projects on their own. The portable trailer includes a comprehensive set of durable materials that can be combined and repurposed for common pop­up components: bike lanes, barriers, seating, signage and more.

What inspired you to build a tiny home on wheels?  

We hosted a few pop-up events where we were cramming supplies into the back of a Prius. Each time we had an event, we had to pack and unpack the car. So we thought, why not create a more permanent way to store supplies and unload them?

We started with a team charrette asking ourselves, “how can we take pop-up design on the road?”; which inspired the question, “How can we create a mobile unit to help us do pop-up events?”

The tiny home concept won by a landslide. It has great storage space, a pop-out platform for events… and who doesn’t want to hang out in a tiny home?

What’s inside the Tiny Wonderful?

Inside Tiny Wonderful, we store a suite of reusable materials that are used to host complete pop-up demonstrations such as parklets, bike lanes, cafes, barber shops, playgrounds, and more.Think: tinker toys for grown-ups! Some of our materials include:

  • Roll-out bike lanes
  • Accordion materials for creating planters
  • Protected dividers between bike lane and traffic
  • Aluminum piping and joints for activating playgrounds + storefronts.

What’s the story behind the name “Tiny Wonderful”?

The first pop-up event we hosted required a lot of materials that only had a one-time use. It took a month of prep, and used heavy materials that were hard to deploy. With Tiny Wonderful, we focused on light-weight, multi use, and easy-to-store materials.

If you take all of the wonderful components of a pop-up design and fit them into a tiny, and easy to transport structure, you have Tiny Wonderful.

Can the Tiny Wonderful come to my next event?

Sure! Send us a note (camryn@radianinc.org) and let us know how you envision partnering with Tiny Wonderful.

How can I get involved with Tiny Wonderful and pop-up design?

Sign up for our email listserv, follow us on social media (@Radian_Denver), and let us know you’re interested in what we’re doing. We’ll send out volunteer opportunities as they come up!