Prefab housing isn't just for the..."thrifty" anymore! Yesterday Wired featured a selection of twelve modular, prefab housing units -- from lofts to place atop city skylines to 60 square-foot cabins with "cathedral ceilings".

Today The NY Times reports that the idea has "become fashionable at architecture schools and among an upscale segment of the housing market." As such, MoMA has commissioned five architects to set up their prefab-ulous designs in their vacant lot on West 53rd St (those chosen, of 400, are KieranTimberlake Associates of Philadelphia; Lawrence Sass of Cambridge, MA; Douglas Gauthier and Jeremy Edmiston of Manhattan; Oskar Leo Kaufmann and Albert Rüf of Austria; and Richard Horden of Horden Cherry Lee in London). The exhibit, titled Home Delivery: Fabricating the Modern Dwelling, will open in July, but foundations will be laid next month. And when the houses begin to arrive in May, there's no doubt it will become a Richard Serra-like spectacle.

At least, that's what Barry Bergdoll, architecture curator at the museum, is predicting and hoping for. He wants to use this exhibit to show as many people as possible that there aren't just economical benefits to these housing options, there are environmental benefits as well. Starting in March the architects involved will be contributing weekly to a blog which will give us a peek into the world of prefab off-site assembly and delivery, hopefully including information about those environmental benefits alluded to.

As far as prefab housing in New York goes, this isn't the first time it will have been exhibited outdoors. Last summer La Maison Tropicale, the Jean Prouvé-designed modernist prefab house, was on display under the Queensborough Bridge before being sold at auction to hotelier Andre Balazs.

How realistic is it for these units to become a part of our cityscape? We asked a New York architect, who told us "As a rooftop application, NYC seems like it could be a good candidate. However, it's hard to say whether or not the current building code could be interpreted to get one of these guys installed. There's also the issue of zoning, particularly if these are considered habitable spaces. There are also structural issues - it could be costly to install steel in the roof if the current roof doesn't support its weight." Take a look at this piece OpenHouse NYC did on the prefab fad.