Time for a quick update. This week I’ve been pretty busy with working on the Big Tiny House Manifestation in Almere, and the Tiny House Nederland Jamboree. But I’ve been getting a lot of questions: ‘I’ve read you’re leaving Alkmaar, where are you going?’ So I think I’ll take a little time to write this blog.
I don’t HAVE to leave Alkmaar, let’s get this clear in the first place. And I’m not in a ‘fight’. I’ve decided to look for another place to live because I have lost faith that this pilot project will reflect the values of the Tiny House Movement – if there’ll be any pilot at all. That blog stirred up things a little: there were articles in the Alkmaarse Courant, Nicolette de Wandeler threatened to chain herself to my house if I tried to leave, NH Nieuws came to see what’s what, GroenLinks Alkmaar president Christian Braak asked questions about the situation in the commission, Stroom Nederland director Danielle Koelemij requested the City Council via e-mail to find a solution, municipality Almere and others offered to find me another place to live… Thank you so much sweethearts! And on top of all that, I made it to News of the Week, together with this most charming caricature ;)
But, although it wasn’t my intention to stir things up, it did help to create new flow. Alderman Jan Nagengast came to tell me that the Provence informed him in writing that the land I live on IS allowed to be zoned for residency, so that the objection from the Water Board Holland Noorderkwartier won’t hold. That is a huge hurdle that is now gone, great! And then the second bump in the road: the organisation and execution of the pilot and the conflicting interests I ascertained between the Gasfabriek and me/Tiny House Nederland. In an attempt to resolve this, a meeting will take place between the municipality, the Gasfabriek and me. This will take place next week, and I’m hoping we’ll find a solution. But I’m keeping in mind that this might not happen and that I’m still going to leave. That last part won’t be that bad, as long as there will be a Tiny House pilot revolving around the next core values:
- Simple living
- Ecological living
- Affordable living
- Creating a community, sharing facilities
- Freedom of choice for the residents whether they want to build themselves, have a house built, or buy a house turn key
- The Tiny Houses must function as primary, fulltime residences (not recreational units or 2nd homes)
From the 370+ applications we received, I’ve selected a group of 6 people that are really motivated to live on this terrain in a Tiny House – off-grid and temporarily. I’ll be speaking mostly for them next week. I’ve already found an alternative location for myself which I’m very excited about, but I don’t want to reveal more at this point. So it’s nowhere near certain that I’m leaving; these new developments are more than enough reason to wait it out for now. We’ll see! Just my luck if it turns out I have to make a difficult choice after all ;)
In the meantime, we’re getting really close to the Tiny House Nederland Jamboree in Almere, this Saturday the 7th of October! And there probably will be a big turn-up, wonderful! After months of preparation we’ve got it all together and now it’s time to be rewarded with a super cool and well visited Tiny House Festival. We’ve got an exciting program of great speakers and workshops, relaxing live music, over 15 Tiny Houses you can check out, a record attempt to fit as many people in a Tiny House as we can, an information market with 27 stands, Q&A sessions with Tiny House residents… it’s going to be awesome! Will you come too? Trust me, you don’t want to miss this. The very first THN Jamboree! I for one can hardly wait. Maybe I’ll see you there!