Launched in 2000 by an empowered, organized, and entrepreneurial group of homeless residents, Dignity Village evolved from a mobile tent city to a city-recognized intentional community in NE Portland. Its beginnings were heavily publicized, political and contentious. But through the tireless work of 60+ homeless residents, a small and dedicated group of volunteers, and local government willing to creatively flex building and land use regulations, Dignity Village remains a self-governed community providing safe housing at a fraction of the cost of more traditional forms of affordable housing. Role: Advisory Board member and convenor of site selection committee, 2001 – 2004.
Tiny Homes on Wheels
Food carts have spread like wildfire across Portland. But how about tiny homes on wheels? Although the tiny house movement is alive and well here, it remains stuck uncomfortably below the radar screen as a not-quite-legal form of affordable housing. Through Orange Splot, we have acquired and completed two cute, safe, and fully habitable homes-on-wheels. We’re keeping our eyes out for a place to launch a tiny house pod community on a lot with an existing home that can serve as a shared common house – and working with local tiny-house residents, builders and advocates to create a legal pathway for this new housing model. Role: Builder, owner, policy advocate
Portlanders have developed all sorts of tiny, beautiful, affordable, and sustainable forms of housing, some legal (ie. accessory dwelling units, detached bedrooms…) and some not. In 2011 and 12, we led Tiny Home bike tours as part of Pedalpalooza, a 3+ week celebration of bikey fun. Each tour attracted 100+ riders, many of whom end up getting inspired to launch their own tiny house projects. Looking ahead, we anticipate leading bike tours to identify and inventory Portland’s “Missing Middle” housing types. Role: Tour organizer and leader/co-leader
Duck Coop Condo
OK, this one’s just for fun. In summer, 2012, I built this 2-story house in our back yard for our daughter’s 3rd birthday and in celebration of our ducklings’ graduation from inside brooder to outdoor home. Ozora gets the upstairs as a play house with covered deck. The ducks get the downstairs, with adjoining run and pond. In 2015, we moved it across the street to our new Cully Grove home. Role: designer, material-scavenger, builder, and proud papa