The stories evoked either sympathy or disgust, but certainly not hope.
But five years later, in 2014, we are now beginning to see stories of hope. We are beginning to see the coverage of grassroots responses to this very same dilemma, where the unhoused and the housed have been working together to transcend from camp to village. Examples include:
- Eugene, Oregon's Opportunity Village - 30 tiny houses - opened September 2013
- Olympia, Washington's Quixote Village - 30 tiny houses - opened January 2014
- Madison, Wisconsin's OM Village - 9 tiny houses - in planning stage
- Austin, Texas' Community First Village - 200 tiny houses - in planning stage
This is certainly an American success story. It is the essence of why I started the Tent City Urbanism project in the first place back in 2010. Local citizens recognized the problem, and they have developed community-based solutions to that problem. As these stories of success spread, it is only a matter of time before cities throughout the nation adopt this cost-effective model for housing the unhoused. Homelessness remains a prevalent issue, government budgets continue to tighten, and tiny house villages are an important part of the answer.
National coverage includes:
Associated Press; “Tiny Houses Help Address Nation’s Homeless Problem” (carried by ABC, CBS, Yahoo News, The Washington Post, Daily Mail, etc.)
The New York Times; “Small World, Big Idea”
Yes! Magazine – “Tiny Houses for the Homeless: An Affordable Solution Catches On” (reposted on BillMoyers.com)