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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Snott Kennedy

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In my experience the cheapest land in America is in dying cities and towns. Of which there are many here in the rust belt. Lots of towns have land banks or realty divisions to sell city-ownwd property, which will be far below market price (land prices are high right now). I bought my first house for $500 and owned it communally with people, got sick of that, so bought my current house for $3000. However, being in a city means you will be subject to higher taxes, regulations and crime. That said, some towns are so empty these days there might not be a thief or a city inspector around to notice your stuff. Take Weirton WV 913 4th St · 913 4th St, Weirton, WV 26062 - https://maps.app.goo.gl/Znc3kBtTwn23bXRs7 or E St Louis IL
1115 Morgan St

Here are some towns--all affordable and with rail traffic--I would consider if it were my project : E Stl, Gary IN, Weirton, Wheeling!, Hinton WV, McKeesport, Johnstown, Altoona PA, Eastern Ohio (Canton, Akron, Youngstown)?? , Cumberland MD.
I don't know what the status is now but I almost bought a hardware store with an apartment upstairs and a garage to the side in Republic, MI for $12,000 several years ago. I ended up backing out--maybe they're still interested in selling.
KCMO definitely has a great punk scene but it's also definitely, at least relative to here, a functioning city with rising real estate prices and humans everywhere. Morgantown seemed to me like a typical college town. Few or no trains and pretty clean cut. I think a "traveller RV park" might stick out in a town like that don't you :) ?

Maybe just a side note but I couldn't help but notice trains can go pretty slow on their way to the top and the scenery is great ;) Summit of the Alleghenies · 213 Tower Rd, Meyersdale, PA 15552 - https://maps.app.goo.gl/r68Mo6TkPohSHGtQ9
 
We sell all kinds of other stuff in our Etsy store!

Matt Derrick

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In my experience the cheapest land in America is in dying cities and towns. Of which there are many here in the rust belt. Lots of towns have land banks or realty divisions to sell city-ownwd property, which will be far below market price (land prices are high right now). I bought my first house for $500 and owned it communally with people, got sick of that, so bought my current house for $3000. However, being in a city means you will be subject to higher taxes, regulations and crime. That said, some towns are so empty these days there might not be a thief or a city inspector around to notice your stuff. Take Weirton WV 913 4th St · 913 4th St, Weirton, WV 26062 - https://maps.app.goo.gl/Znc3kBtTwn23bXRs7 or E St Louis IL
1115 Morgan St

Here are some towns--all affordable and with rail traffic--I would consider if it were my project : E Stl, Gary IN, Weirton, Wheeling!, Hinton WV, McKeesport, Johnstown, Altoona PA, Eastern Ohio (Canton, Akron, Youngstown)?? , Cumberland MD.
I don't know what the status is now but I almost bought a hardware store with an apartment upstairs and a garage to the side in Republic, MI for $12,000 several years ago. I ended up backing out--maybe they're still interested in selling.
KCMO definitely has a great punk scene but it's also definitely, at least relative to here, a functioning city with rising real estate prices and humans everywhere. Morgantown seemed to me like a typical college town. Few or no trains and pretty clean cut. I think a "traveller RV park" might stick out in a town like that don't you :) ?

Maybe just a side note but I couldn't help but notice trains can go pretty slow on their way to the top and the scenery is great ;) Summit of the Alleghenies · 213 Tower Rd, Meyersdale, PA 15552 - https://maps.app.goo.gl/r68Mo6TkPohSHGtQ9
Those are some great suggestions, and I wouldn't personally mind living in the rust belt or even better, Michigan. The point I think we've been stuck on so far is finding a location, and having extremely limited means to procure said location. Personally, I'm not quite ready to settle down anywhere yet, but that could change if I find the 'right spot' for this kind of project. I'm going to add your suggestions as places to research, and possibly visit during my travels to see first hand if they would fit the bill.

If you have more suggestions on any part of the process involved for finding/purchasing land for this project I'd love to hear them.
 

ERSK

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There is cheap land south of Albuquerque near Belen bordering the National Forest. $500/acre and no covenants or restrictions. Valencia County is auctioning land for back taxes too so it could be even cheaper. Belen is a major railroad hub, Abq is close enough for a commute and has a growing film industry. Netflix is investing $1 billion and there are many contract jobs for extras. Down side is getting utilities and water, windy and dust storms in spring. Abq has issues with crime but many people love it there. Summer and winter are usually mild. New Mexico has some really beautiful country for hiking, camping and exploring. View attachment 54349
I like this idea, I'm working my way down this thread and coming upon your suggestion made me think of the sandbag houses they build in permaculture communities in the south west. Easy enough to build and maintain plus they look really cool. Swap coolers are a thing there from it being low humidity and rocketstoves use minimal fuel but provide enough heat and cooking for winters. Also I've always wanted to build one of these lol
imma continue reading but you have my vote

@Matt Derrick made it to the end of the thread and just wanted to let you know that I would be all in for this! I love the desert but also all the idea mentioned as far as location go I would be down for and honestly don't care where.

Giving my current living situation I would be able to commit 100% with anything needed for this project and I know I've created threads recently about boats and sailing. This out ways those desires and I also really love everything @jimi and @NewMexicoJim have contributed thus far. Cool ideas, wish it was happening now so I could just go there and TCB but also I understand....
 
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