Sunflowervillager's Blog

Growing into community

Satellite Housing Revisited October 20, 2009

Filed under: community structure,organization — Saera @ 1:06 pm

Hyrum left a comment which made me realize I hadn’t explained Satellite Housing as clearly as I’d thought, so I”m going to try again.

A central commons building could provide for a large part of common needs, avoiding much of the redundancy of equipment and housing that is created by conventional residential architecture and community structure in the United States (and to varying extents, elsewhere). I would recommend that this structure include a well equipped kitchen (including drying, canning, freezing, and other equipment/spaces used inprocesses for food storage), common dining space, a library/study, a craft and art area, and bathing facilities. It would also make sense to have dorms in this building for part time or temporary villagers.

Miniature dwellings would provide personal space and privacy for families and and long term/full time villagers. At most, these should contain sleeping quarters, intelligent toilets (ex composting), perhaps one or two burners, and limited seating space. These dwellings would be as well insulated as the Central House. Maximum power should be obtained at each dwelling, supplemented where necessary. Long term members would have the option to design their own dwelling, probably in a seniority order. They would have assistance from the village in the construction. The village benefits from this by having more private space, and freeing up rooms/dorms for more and newer members/visitors. These dwellings should be built to have minimal ecological impact, using such concepts as sun-orientation, safe/environmentally friendly insulation, renewable energy, grey-water plumbing/composting, sustainable/recycled materials, simple machines, and low square-footage. Examples include (but are not limited to yurts, treehouses, mini-cabins/houses, geodomes, Spaceship Earth dwellings, or longhouses (for larger families or family groups).

Ownership/stewardship system is not yet clearly established. While ideally the original designers and inhabitants would ideally continue residence in these dwellings and participation in the village, it is recognized that other scenarios arise and contingencies must be provided. But while the designer-inhabitants are there, once the dwelling is approved, they have residential sovereignty over the dwelling. That is to say, the village will not involuntarily move/relocate the inhabitants and that the inhabitants set the rules and norms about that dwelling, except as shall be illegal or contrary to the village values and mission.

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