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TINY HOUSE MOVEMENT: Comes To The Mt Shasta Area

Three weeks ago, on a winter afternoon Pam Newman and Shane McClellan kicked off the first meeting of a group focused on easing issues relating to local affordable housing/shelter. The vision of this group is:

To co-create a tiny house community set up in the Mt Shasta area done in an eco-friendly manner to help serve a local working class.

Pam posed the following question:

So, what if an affordable tiny house village could be located within a bike ride or even a short walk into downtown Mt Shasta? Something creative to help offset the lack of rental space available.

Tiny House communities already exist in Bandon Oregon, the Puget Sound area, and San Diego CA for example. These houses range in size from 200 to 600 square feet. Few are mobile units such as fifth wheel trailers while others are factory-built housing units wheeled in but placed on foundations. In all these locations the sense of community is important. Community facilities such as workshops, game and exercise rooms, BBQ areas, dog parks, libraries, and community gardens add to one’s enjoyment and afford opportunities for personal interaction. Since the houses are, by definition, tiny, these community spaces offer important open space. 

While the communities are self-governing within their community, all the units must meet the local zoning and building codes. 

Shane McClellan and Iliana Greenfield have a tiny house construction business in McCloud. They are currently offering a complete 200 SF tiny house for sale. All the wood used in construction comes from local sources and is milled locally too. The house is mobile and can be easily moved to a temporary location or permanently to remain on a concrete foundation accompanied by a deck, trees, and flowers.

Laurel Harkness, a community organizer, wants to be sure that the vision/goal is fully focused on serving the housing needs of low-income community members. She supports any efforts to create truly affordable housing in our community. Laurel holds a vision that our local efforts can serve as a model for other communities. These communities require open land with appropriate zoning. Possible sites include the former Roseberg property on South Mt. Shasta Boulevard, the former hospital site on A Street, and the City-owned Orchard property.

Mt. Shasta City Planner Jeff Meacham says, “Tiny houses certainly provide affordable shelter. They need to be professionally managed and to operate within local regulations. The City Code is currently silent as to tiny house regulations.”

Tim Stearns, a current Mt. Shasta City Council member believes that these houses are great as an opportunity to provide affordable shelter. He noted that two other community business owners are quite interested in the tiny house opportunity. He stated that the current zoning and changes in the City Code must occur to accommodate tiny houses.

Mt. Shasta City Councilor Tessa Clure says “___________ “

Financing sources for site improvements such as power, water, sewage disposal, and roadways need to be determined. Significant discussions regarding possible subsidized rental rates may also need to occur. 

About forty local folks who attended waxed enthusiastically about the concept. There is high hope that the vision can become reality for our community, but there are challenges ahead. 

For further information please contact Pam Newman at 530-859-2309

cover photo credit: WinnieC

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