Monday, June 9, 2014

With one up and running, plans for a new kind of village are announced.

OpportunityVillage held an open house this past weekend to celebrate the completion of the first tiny house village in Eugene, Oregon. The event attracted around two hundred people from the surrounding community and as far as Dallas, Texas. Tours were provided by some of the 31 residents of the self-governed community for otherwise homeless individuals and couples.

Community gathers at OVE Open House
Nate & Nicole's House

The pilot project opened with a dozen residents in August of last year after receiving a conditional use permit from the city. Volunteers and residents built the tiny houses of 60 to 80 square feet over the course of the past nine months to grow the community incrementally. The compact dwellings are supported by common gathering, kitchen and restroom facilities. More than 50 people have called it home for varying lengths of time since the project opened.

“I want to say on behalf of the City of Eugene,” Mayor Kitty Piercy told the crowd, “We told you from the beginning that this was a pilot to try this out to see if it would work… Congratulations, I think it’s beautiful! I'm so grateful to the community and all of you who live here and work here. The things you have put together, who knew this could all happen?... we are so proud of you."

Dan Bryant speaks to crowd at the OVE Open House

With significant amounts of volunteer labor and donated materials, Opportunity Village was able to be built for around $100,000 cash—all with private donations from individuals, businesses, and organizations. Residents now pay a $30 monthly fee to cover operating expenses. Oversight is provided by a non-profit organization, Opportunity Village Eugene (OVE).

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Mark Lakeman at TEDxSantaCruz - "Badass Democracy"