A small well-lit place to live
I had wanted to write a more elaborate post on this, but time’s getting away from me.
Last week, the Globe ran a story about cottages – “clustered bungalows” they called them.
A cottage comeback? – By Robert Preer, The Boston Globe
The homes would be less than 1,000 square feet each with one or two bedrooms and detached one-car garages. There would be no basements or attics, and the second floor or “half story” would be built into the pitched roof, which would require occupants to duck when they approach a wall.
Houses in the developments would be clustered, seven per acre and each with a tiny yard. Most would be priced between $245,000 and $345,000 …
… the homes are designed for young single or married professionals without children and empty nesters. Many owners would be first-time buyers, who otherwise would be unable to afford a newly built house, according to the developer.
I love this idea. I first noticed this kind of housing on “House Hunters”. I had never seen this type of development before.
These projects are pretty dense. This developer, for example, is considering putting up to seven homes on an acre lot.
So, you get a postage-stamp-sized yard.
But, for many, having a single-family home is better than living in a condo, regardless of size.
It’s something I have thought about, on and off.
In fact, two summers ago while on vacation on the Cape, we stayed in a cool little home which seems to be exactly what they’re talking about.
Two bedrooms downstairs, open floor plan upstairs, one full bath, a little patio, and a patch of land, along with a parking spot. Probably 30′ x 40′ in diameter, tops.
Well, not surprisingly, not everyone is enthusiastic about developments such as this.
“When you have seven houses on an acre, there’s not going to be a lot of open space,” said Easton resident Kyla Bennett. “It goes against the build-out plans of the town.”
[The developer] said the developments would not burden local school systems. Because the cottages are so small and cannot be expanded, few residents would have children, he said.
Critics are skeptical. “It’s going to impact the schools,” said Bennett. “What if someone gets pregnant, are you going to kick them out?”
No. We’re going to have them move into your home, instead, lady.
Let me just say, I’ve read just about all I can handle about towns protecting themselves by enforcing laws that exclude anyone who makes or wishes to spend less money on housing.
Which is why the Massachusetts legislature has had to step in over the past twenty years to pass laws that force towns to accept multi-unit and high-density projects.
It’s so convoluted.
I’m sorry that towns feel the pressure of more people wanting to live there. Yes, their quality of life is affected, and yes, families put added pressure on towns’ infrastructures, and yes, more children means more public schools and more teachers’ salaries.
That doesn’t make it right.
Two-acre minimums and other zoning laws are a terrible way to deal with the problem.
Everyone complains about the high cost of housing in Massachusetts.
Except for those who own, I guess. They want it to stay high-cost.
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