Berkeley man makes a (really rather nice) dumpster home

Gregory Kloehn lives in central Berkeley and he makes things for a living. His latest creation may be his most inventive yet, for Kloehn has fabricated a home out of a dumpster — yes, your regular dumpster, known primarily as a receptacle for trash.

This isn’t the first home Kloehn, 41, has made. Working from a workshop in Oakland, he has crafted homes, offices, and sound studios out of shipping containers. He also knows his way around a remodel. In 1999 he bought a condemned warehouse and a rundown Victorian in Oakland and began refurbishing and reconfiguring them.

Kloehn is a neighbor of Kim Aronson‘s, a filmmaker and regular contributor to Berkeleyside. Aronson clambered with Kloehn into the dumpster home and shot the video above for us. Listen to Kloehn talk about the home’s high-end features, including the hardwood floors and granite countertops.

Kloehn says he decided to take on this remarkable feat of engineering and design while working on a shipping container home. “I would look over the fence at a dumpster and think that it looked like a little house,” he says.


The “Elite Waste” dumpster home will make its public debut at the 2011 San Francisco Fringe Festival which runs September 7-18. Then, Kloehn says, he will live in it for a while, “bringing it to different places around the Bay Area”.

We’ve heard of the small house movement, of course, but this takes it to a whole new level.