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Group hopes to build village of tiny houses in KC’s urban core

The Tiny House Collective Kansas City is optimistic that it will be able to move forward in developing plans to build a 12-unit tiny house village, possibly as soon as next year. The nonprofit is considering designs like this one from the Small House Catalog. The houses would range from 240 to 350 square feet in size.
The Tiny House Collective Kansas City is optimistic that it will be able to move forward in developing plans to build a 12-unit tiny house village, possibly as soon as next year. The nonprofit is considering designs like this one from the Small House Catalog. The houses would range from 240 to 350 square feet in size.

A Kansas City group is optimistic about its ability to build a 12-unit tiny house village, possibly as soon as next year.

Joshua Farmer, president of the nonprofit Tiny House Collective Kansas City, said he learned at a recent meeting with Planning and Development Department officials that the concept would fit existing city codes that allow cottage house developments.

“They couldn’t have been more receptive of the idea,” Farmer said.

The only sticking points appeared to be some of the green technology — off-grid solar power and composting toilets — that the group wants to include in the development, Farmer said.

The Tiny House Collective is looking to build what it is calling a pocket neighborhood, or village of tiny houses that range from 240 to 350 square feet in size. The development would also include a common building that probably would house a large kitchen and a laundry room.

“It is an interesting concept, and we are interested to see what this involves and what they can propose to us,” city planner Patty Noll said. “There are certain situations where it may or may not be allowed within the city.”

If necessary, the city would consider possible amendments to the zoning ordinance to allow the tiny houses, Noll said.

The next step is for the Tiny House Collective to submit drawings and possible locations for the village.

There are several reasons why the tiny house movement sounds attractive to people. Tiny house home owner Terry Rouse along with Joshua Farmer of the Tiny House Collective Kansas City talk about their reasons for going “tiny” and their vision for K

To build the village, the group would have to get three adjacent parcels and have them rezoned into one. The collective has identified three sites in the urban core that could meet its needs.

The overall cost of the development is uncertain, but Farmer estimated it could be as much as $400,000. The goal of the Tiny House Collective is to provide home ownership opportunities for low-income residents.

Farmer said the Tiny House Collective is working with Tim Baldridge, an architect with NSPJ Architects in Prairie Village, to do the site plan development. The group is considering designs from the Small House Catalog and is exploring financing options through Missouri Bank.

To help fund the development, the group is seeking sponsors for the Tiny House Village. For information about sponsoring the project, contact Farmer at josh@tinyhousecollective.org or go to www.tinyhousecollective.org/sponsors/ to see specific sponsorship requests.

Building could start as early as spring 2016 if everything comes together, Farmer said.

For previous coverage, see:

Tiny-house trend moves into Kansas City

Photo gallery: Tiny-house trend moves into Kansas City

Mitch Trumpp, co-owner of Second Life Studios, describes the work and detail that goes into building a 300 sq. foot tiny home for a family of three in Kansas City.

To reach Robert A. Cronkleton, call 816-234-4261 or send email to bcronkleton@kcstar.com.

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