Recently an article was published in the Ithaca Times featuring Carol Whitlow about dense duplex developments in Varna, NY and its effect on community. It highlights how in a small town like Varna, constructing densely populated development is incongruous and fragments the sense of community and neighborly relations. High density housing in an otherwise low density area promotes a commuter lifestyle that is cut off from the rest of the surrounding community. You can read the article in it's entirety here: Varna Development Not According to Plan
As some of you may know, Tiny Timber is currently seeking approval on a development plan in Varna, The draft layout can be seen on our previous post! Working with the community and promoting community development is exactly what we strive to do with Tiny Timber. I reached out to Carol to get feedback from the community on the development that we are working on. What she said resonated so well with what we are trying to do that I would like to share her words with you:
"The first best thing about Tiny Timbers is that it is locally owned. The company is part of our community, which hopefully implies they feel a commitment and responsibility to build positive relationships with clients through providing a welcome product.
Varna needs more homes for young professionals and families to settle in. We need a "neighborhood" where homes have a connection to one another. Whatever happened to borrowing a cup of sugar from your neighbor when you're in the middle of making muffins? First, you have to know your neighbor! Let's not encourage jumping in the car for every little need. Let's think about sustainable life styles. People are becoming more minimalist. They can get what they need when they need it, if they really do, and don't need to stock and store it for potential future use like our grandparents did. We don't need the houses with huge storage spaces, barns, basements and attics. And many don't want to manage that kind of stuff. People want to focus on healthy lifestyles, good relationships and good work in their professional life.
What we do need is to use what little land we have left to build sustainable communities for us to call home, places we want to stay in because they are well designed and fit our lives. Ithaca is a culture-rich area, full of hiking trails, concerts, dances, interesting lectures, classes and places to just have fun (lakes, streams, parks). There are many great locally-owned businesses to check out. It keeps the money in our community, helping us to grow here and make here better.
So, manageable-sized homes in neighborhoods with others can help us enjoy life. Tiny Timber can be that."
Thank you for you words Carol! We will continue to do our best to promote affordable, sustainable housing with an emphasis on community.