StP HQ / Punk Rock RV Park (1 Viewer) Seeking Help Needs Research 

Matt Derrick

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So this thread is for discussing an idea I've had for many years now, that I would like to share with the community and get some input on.

This thread is for discussing an extension of the Squat the Planet website into real life by starting a homebase/headquarters for the StP community in the form of a physical location with full time live-in residents, as well as accommodating a rotating cast of visiting travelers.

The core idea

The location would take the form of a plot of land that would be turned into a residence while also giving a space for other projects. The residence portion would take the form of what could be best described as an RV park, where residents long term and short term alike could come and go as they please between travels. There would also be more permanent structures in place, such as teepees, tents, yurts, and possibly more advanced alternative building structures like shipping container houses, etc.

Amenities would include shore/house power, potable water, public showers, a travel-specific library, mail boxes, and others.

The space would also be designed to have an open performance area/stage, campfire hangout spots, a bar for special events, and other areas such as gardens and a blacksmith shop. Other ideas are possible based on what the residents want to pursue.

Apologies for the vagueness at this point, but location, monetary and social logistics are all things that will need to be discussed in this thread, and as we work things out, i will update this first post with the latest information that is decided upon; eventually, the goal here is to have an exact outline of the project and what we hope to achieve and why.

At this point though, I just want to get the discussion started so feel free to post your input, concerns, and ideas for how we can make this a reality.

Who would own/run the space?

The idea would be that the land would be owned under a land trust with a board of directors essentially, so no one person owns the land. it would definitely be owned and run collectively.

How are you going to pay for this?

In terms of getting it paid for, I am open to ideas, but my main focus might theoretically be a kickstarter of some kind, where we could sell weekend visits/parties at the land to raise money for it. we did this when I created an indigogo campaign for east jesus and it did pretty well.

For the most part though, financing is still under debate/research.

Similar projects

Just to give you an idea of what I'm going for here, I'm going to list a few places that I feel are at least somewhat similar:

Where would something like this be located?

Locations are still up in the air since I just haven't found that one perfect place that would make me want to settle down long enough to make something like this happen. That said, some considerations would be:
  • Kansas City, MO (KCMO): I keep hearing there's a lot of punk houses here and a good community. Not sure about land prices though.
  • Tucson, AZ: I hear rumors of a burdgeoning anarchist/punk/activist community here and there's lots of BLM land in the area. Suggested by @dumpsternavel in this post.
  • @TheUndeadPhoenix has suggested some of the more remote areas of Pennsylvania.
  • @NewMexicoJim has suggested some cheap land for sale between Albuquerque and Belem, NM; more info and a photo in this post.
  • Morgantown, WV - " Morgantown area still has cheap land in the hills and it's relatively close to Pittsburgh"
  • "there is cheap land around Taos/Tres Piedras NM as well. Taos mesa is somewhat of a all diy houses built in the desert, mostly punks and hippies before them, being there since the 80s. sounds like your project would fit right in. just buy a few acres and all good to go"
While not totally impossible, it seems like both the east and west coasts are probably going to be out of the question due to land costs and other factors, but if someone wants to prove me wrong, please do so. For now, I'm mostly concentrating our search on somewhere in the mid west / four corners areas, preferably along a major train route (again, to make it easier for folks to visit).

I'm avoiding areas that are overly remote (no matter how cheap/free they may be) due to logistical hurdles and the fact that we'd like to have a space where folks could optionally have jobs to save up for their next leg of travel or finance projects in the space itself.

For now, I'm asking any travelers that are interested in this project to keep a look out for good locations that might meet these requirements. If you come across something let us know!
 
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dumpsternavel

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So willing to through down on this.

Currently been in Tucson, AZ. Rent is cheap here, and there are some awesome community resources, and a real active punk/diy/anarchist scene.

Maybe within a stone throw of Tucson would be worth looking into for land?
Definitely a hub for travellers, as well.
 
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Mongo

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I could help put time and effort into a place in north east Ohio. I'm in cleveland currently and there is a lot of rural cheap land within 30 miles. Also if you look inside the city there are a lot of places that can easily be worked on because of super relaxed codes on permits.

There is a lot of factory work around here too for some reason a lot of places can't find remotely sober people to work for them.
 
D

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I closed my account
i love the idea, i really have never worked in a cooperative group that i felt really worked. i eventually stopped doing that kinda stuff, because it was always just a bunch of people arguing, talking and never actually doing anything. i would much rather just show up and someone says we need this hole dug, here is a shovel, dig it, then sit through 10 meetings of 20 people arguing about the best most way to dig a hole and how to fairly divide up the work of digging holes. just give me the fucking shovel and i will dig them all while you sit around talking about it.
so most of the time i just do projects by myself, just easier, and the shit gets done. I will say that all of my projects, and all the projects i've been apart of always fail for the same reasons.
money / rent. if you buy the land this takes care of rent, you still have to pay property taxes but this is very affordable. all my early projects failed because they eventually grew to a point where they because financially unfeasible, because they didn't generate any money and i couldn't afford to keep them going. the one that lasted the longest and got the biggest was printing, and happened because it generated an income, which made it possible to expand and continue.
the other big problem in anti authoritarian projects is lack of a good way to get past disagreements, and people constantly trying to fight for status and leadership roles (in groups where there are supposed to be no leaders).

there is lots of cheap land. i love the area around flag. i had hoped to find a job and buy land in the area but it just didn't work out. I-17 & I-40 meet there, lots of cheap land around valle & ashfork, zoning laws are not really the greatest, but lots of people in the area seem to be ignoring them.

i was kind of looking at land in pershing county nevada near lovelock. it's cheap, there is lots of work between fernley and reno at an industrial center, winters are doable off the grid, summers aren't too bad. no state income tax. it is off the I-80. not sure about zoning, have not researched that yet. i do know in some counties in nevada there are little to no restrictions.

new mexico sounds interested, haven't looked into it much, but it is an area on my list of places to go.

I live in Pershing county, building codes aren't bad at all, I'm at the edge of the county and the inspector is in Lovelock, he's too far to come out so all I do is email him pics and he signs off my projects that way. Grid power and LP gas both had to be physically inspected by those providers, but that was easy too.
 
D

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So, I got a really dumb question, which is based on some of the more recent bantering's going on here:

Is the goal of this STP community to be like - STP's version of an intentional community ??

Because of some of the recent posts over the past couple of months, this subject of intentional communal living [which I never heard of before...] has kind of struck a chord inside of me.

Part of me thinks is a great idea - a community of like minded individuals, all living together for a common goal, but what happens when someone decides to join up, and then starts to interject their own views or ideas ??

I think it's an important question, and it can be applied to many things - even neighborhoods.

Where I currently live, it's been my home among other things since late July 1991.
The neighborhood then was primarially Polish and working class.
And it was on the wonkey side too - but it was super safe, and it was the perfect place to set up plans to build a home recording studio - where live music with full bands was possible.

As of late, the neighborhood has been changing, people been moving in and not because they want to be a part of what once was [which was my reason...] but because of what they can make it in to.

So now, you get this new homeowner from Peru, who is ok with trash being deposited everywhere, and he has a real hatred of trees and is cutting down every tree in sight, which is enraging me beyond belief.

So, if this was a type of intentional community - could the long time residents rise up and throw him and his ilk out ??

The thing that worries me about any kind of community is when the original vision changes, and it's not for the better - although I am certain that is subjective as well, because who gets to say what is right and wrong.

The CRASS ethos from what I remember - I'm going back to the mid 1980s now, was "do what you want to do, be who you want to be", and their version of anarchy was just that - as long as no living being was hurt or harmed in any way.

This is something I could get completely on board with.

One of the STP people whose name escapes me - he just got a warning for appparently not playing nicely with other's - it seems to me that he is trying very hard to find the right place, the right scene - and there seems to be a pattern where he does indeed check different groups and scenes out, but it sounds like he try's to interject his own views and values on people who have been living a certain way, and that to me is 100% wrong.

You can't just walk up and say you people are all fucked.

Where I am going with this - is how would the STP community work ??
Would it be a free for all kinds of misfits like maybe The Slabs on a way smaller scale, or would it be more along the lines of the CRASS Dial House which Penny Rimbaud put together back in the 1970s, and is still going - I believe - today.

It would really suck to get something going only to see it get destroyed.
That's why talking about this rather than jumping in head first is probably not a bad idea.

Anarchy Peace LOVE and Freedom
 

MetalBryan

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What if there isn't a right place but a right time?

A lot of people are hurting right now, some are getting by, but not a small percentage of people are like me - fresh off the job with no return of employment, our local social networks have collapsed because our friends are bugging out, and pockets full of stimulating government cheddar.

Could the experiment be as simple as picking a spot with temperate weather, finding a rural real estate agent, and renting a house with acreage?
 

NewMexicoJim

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With nothing but time on my hands lately, I have been conducting research on mortgages. Having never had one, I knew near zero about the process and what types of home loans were currently available. I was surprised at my results which could be useful here.

While traditional mortgage rates are at historic lows of under 3%, lenders are tightening their credit requirements so going through a mortgage lender or bank would probably get many of us here rejected. There are other options to traditional home loans though.There are government programs designed for first time home buyers, people with low incomes and just ok credit, people in rural areas.

FHA Guaranteed Loan: 3.5% down payment. FHA guarantees 90% of the loan which you get through a mortgage lender. Credit requirements are not as stringent. Rates around 4%.
What is an FHA Loan? - Complete Guide to FHA Loans | Zillow - https://www.zillow.com/mortgage-learning/fha-loan/

U.S. Dept. of Agriculture:

Guaranteed Loan, Zero down payment. Low interest around 3-4%, guaranteed by USDA and obtained through traditional lender. Can be used to buy, upgrade/improve or build new. be in approved rural area of less than 35,000 population, cannot be used for income generation, must live on property plus other requirements. For low income buyers with less than stellar credit.

Direct Loan: Zero down payment, interest around 1% with subsidy. This is for low income buyers with less than stellar credit and buyer must "be without decent, safe and sanitary housing." Must live in the house for 10 years, plus other stipulations. Yes, that's right ZERO DOWN, 1% INTEREST if you qualify. No joke. This loan is obtained directly through the USDA and not a traditional mortgage lender.

USDA Single Family Housing Program

I realize that this isn't for everyone but I thought @Matt Derrick and a few others with dreams of a sanctuary might find this helpful.
 

Matt Derrick

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So, a small update post just to let people know that are following this thread that I've deleted a lot of posts and answered most of those deleted questions in the OP and greatly expanded on the information there, so check that out and let's continue the discussion; I'm really liking a lot of the ideas and questions people have so far. Some of the more complicated ones I'll try and address here soon.
 

Beegod Santana

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Honestly I'd say Missouri, Tennessee or Kentucky. There's a reason there's already so many communes in those states despite being red leaning. Cheap land, long growing season, plenty of water, not a lot of permits/red tape out in the country, ect... If you're looking for just the cheapest property possible West Virginia is the spot, Morgantown area still has cheap land in the hills and it's relatively close to Pittsburgh.
 

marble

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Honestly I'd say Missouri, Tennessee or Kentucky. There's a reason there's already so many communes in those states despite being red leaning. Cheap land, long growing season, plenty of water, not a lot of permits/red tape out in the country, ect... If you're looking for just the cheapest property possible West Virginia is the spot, Morgantown area still has cheap land in the hills and it's relatively close to Pittsburgh.

morgantown is awesome area
 

marble

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could you please elaborate with more information? WHY is it awesome?

I just meant West Virginia as a whole is beautiful, im actually not to sure on the city of morgantown i know they had good skate scene and we came down through there from pits but i enjoyed the rolling hills and lakes with some cool cliff jumping spots, some of the best thrifting/flea markets, and the fire flies litter the sky during the hot summers.. only spent a few months when i was younger, closer to Charleston but i enjoyed it and always thought it would be a mellow/affordable spot to buy land.
-marble
 

Beegod Santana

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Morgantown is pretty much the party town of West Virginia. It's home to WVU and is a Mecca for young people around the state. Everyone used to burn couches on their front lawns whenever the football team won a game if that gives you any idea.
 
D

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makes sense, if you did i'd sure appreciate it. if for no other reason than to just start a federation of houses/properties people can travel to, which is kind of a far flung idea i have for this project once the first one gets started...

Talk to Bshoe he's a member here, he started BBCRC and would probably have some super practical insights. I think Black Buttes secret is it's community oriented and is a 501C3 non-profit. This put's it in a relatively respectable place as it's partially open to the public but still serves the travel community in a communal punk rock/train bum kinda way..
 

Hudson

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Well I'm currently in the works of upgrading my house west of Spokane. After its fixed up I'm open to suggestions.

The main cost is property taxes about 800$ a year and the oil furnace for the horrible winters.

Not very large, 1,278 square feet but with a full basement.
 

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