A Tale of Zoning Happily Ever After


Groundbreaking Zoning Ordinace for Tiny House Communities

Documenting tiny house movemehistory in the making in Rockledge, Fl

Image from Tiny House Expedition, documenting tiny house movement history in the making in Rockledge, Fl.

Once upon a time in the small, forward-thinking city of Rockledge, Florida, some of the most progressive tiny housing zoning ordinances in the entire US of A were approved, in record time and with great ease. You see, the forward-thinking City Manager had an eye for viable solutions for the needs of his constituents and a knack for facilitating progress. A fair maiden, by the name of René Hardee approached him & the city planners one fine day with a few simple questions. The rest is history…

A little on the cheesy side? Maybe. But after a recent trip to Florida to witness tiny house movement history in the making, I realized maybe fairytales can come true. The city of Rockledge provides an astonishing example of how smooth the process of creating & approving brand-new zoning regulations can be. Of course every city’s approach to zoning is distinct, with many good reasons. The question is why do some cities make the process so complicated and drawn out? Particularly when presented with a viable idea that benefits residents and provides opportunity for economic development. Continue reading

Experience the Tiny House Jamboree

Photo by Tiny House Expedition

Photo by Tiny House Expedition

Tiny House Expedition captures the essence of the Tiny House Jamboree 2015 experience. The tiny house tribe takes over Colorado Springs for an inspiring, epic weekend. Featuring highlights from this historic tiny house community gathering. Over 35,000 attendees flocked from for all 50 states & many countries, to learn, connect & build community during this 3-day extravaganza. There were 28 tiny houses of all kinds on display, creating an energized temporary TH village.

The first of five videos from #TeamTinyX on the THJ 2015- stay tuned!

The Jamboree videos include advice & insights from tiny house community leaders. Plus, full-length presentations from tiny house luminaries Jay Shafer, Andrew Morrison & Zack Giffin.

One video to be released per day over this week!

868 Ogden Utah

The following is not a tiny house, but it is creative use of a small space so I thought I would let Stew share it with you.

By Stew MacInnes

I thought that your readers might like to see the photos of a cool little project that we just completed. This is a little 780sq ft building in downtown Ogden Utah. The property is located in a rather run down part of town, which the city is really trying to improve. The area has all the trappings associated with urban blight, rampant drug use, gangs, crime…you name it, it has it! In fact, when a family member and I purchased the property, the front window had six bullet holes, the planter had hypodermic needles in the bed, the front door had been kicked in and the furnace was destroyed after vandals went in and ripped out the copper coils. – Interesting side bar, I still had to fight the city council on numerous fronts regarding my plans to renovate the property, much like most tiny home owners find when dealing with city hall!

868 building completed

I purchased the property with the intent of using it as my office, which I did for most of this past summer. Then when Maximus Extreme Living Solutions started to take off, I decided to sell the building since I had moved my office into our production warehouse.

The property once housed a small chiropractic office; the good Doc practiced there up and into his 80’s. After the project was just about complete, the former owner’s daughter and son-in-law stopped by and asked if they could come in and view the renovation. They were very complimentary and said that their dad would have loved what we had done to the place!

I would like to give credit to the commercial contractor that I hired on this project, his name is Mike Smith of Stature construction and he was fantastic to work with. I also used a gentleman by the name of Mic Allen to do the custom steel work that you see on the front of the building (I designed images that were consistent with Ogden’s past and used a 1930’s font for the street address of 868, that you see on the fascia of the building). Lastly, I’d like to credit my business partner on this project, my mom Sue, she is great to work with!

[nggallery id=61]

Shelter 2.0 Fundraiser

I just wanted to update you as to what is going on with our Shelter 2.0 project. We are working towards a goal of sending ten (a twenty foot container full) of our new version of the shelters to Haiti and have a mission group that is willing to ship them for us for only a thousand dollars as well as make sure they get through customs using their in country agents and get them where we would like them to go with their trucks once they get to Haiti.

The new version has metal on it and is we think more fitting to the needs of helping those who need shelter. After being in Haiti this summer it seemed like a crime to give families living under tarps if they were lucky a shelter that relied on the lifespan of another tarp so we designed it to have corrugated metal go around it. The corrugations are cut in the framing so that the metal goes on very easily.

This link will send you to our new website with pictures from our recent fundraiser. We also were in Atlanta recently setting up one of our shelters for a homeless shelter group called the Mad Housers.

Happy Holidays  Robert Bridges

If you are interested in purchasing one for yourself please email Robert at info@shelter20.com.

The Tiny Homemade Trailer – 1937

Guest post by Gayle Lobdell Opie

I’ve been investigating little houses and got to thinking about the trailer my father built in 1937. He was an electrician working for a contracting company in Rapid City, SD, in the 1930s. His company was taking on new construction jobs assigning him as foreman. Some of them were government jobs as the country prepared in case the problems in Europe overflowed to the US. One job was for a Naval installation in the middle of South Dakota, if you can believe that.

The problem was that these jobs were going to take my dad away from home and into the surrounding states of North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, and Nebraska for extended periods of time. Continue reading