New building project!: Sub-community kitchen and social house

by ziggy on October 4, 2009 -- 7 comments -- Follow


I, along with four others, have embarked upon a new building adventure. We have just begun the very early phases of building a shared kitchen and social space.

Thomas, Ali, Liat, April, and I are part of a sub-community at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage. Thomas, Ali, Liat, and I started discussions last year about working and living more closely with one another. These talks and many more discussions throughout this year lead us to design a kitchen space that we can all share. We started eating together during this summer in a rugged outdoor kitchen setup (we keep our food in a filing cabinet, for example), but we definitely want a more permanent structure.

The building will feature both indoor and outdoor cooking functionality, and a loft and balcony for additional social space. It will be appropriate for 6-8 people. It will be made on the cheap, and as you can probably guess, out of mostly natural and reclaimed materials: an urbanite foundation, roundwood post and beams, and cob walls (with space for some other materials, too.) We have been talking quite a bit about making shakes for the roof and building a masonry oven for cooking. The kitchen will be electricity-free and have extremely simple plumbing. (The current plan is to have a cistern with a hand pump for water needs.) I am quite excited about this project. It will be a great experience to work more closely with these friends of mine.

You can also probably guess that I will want to document the building process and progress. I am uncertain if I will want to contain all of that information on The Year of Mud or start a brand new blog devoted to the kitchen. I am leaning towards the latter, but if you have any feedback, let me know!

Look out for more!

(Above photo: eyeing a giant 2′-2.5′ diameter cottonwood tree for post potential. We’re thinking of going massive with a huge center post in the middle of the kitchen.)

(Below: the building site, staked out and ready for digging!)


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  • catastrophegirl

    love the idea for the kitchen.
    are you going to handle greywater on a manual haul out basis or create the greywater system starting with a drain right out of the sink area into a filter and reclamation system?

  • By an odd coincidence we’ve just been give acces to some land ane we’re wondering about starting by making a kitchen type of place. I’m already trawling through your site and links to find ideas, so I’m really interested to see how you’ll work on this. Thanks for sharing.

  • ziggy

    catastrophegirl: We’re thinking of doing a very simple greywater system – perhaps carefully sending the wastewater to some shrubs/trees behind the kitchen.

    Andy: Hopefully I will get up some floor plans so that you can see the design of our structure!

  • Rory

    You’re already way past your grace period on the “year” of mud, dude: I propose a new blog :-]

    Anyways, I’m psyched to hear about this new development and look forward to observing the progress not only in cyberspace, but in real life!

  • Bryan36b

    How much water do you think you all will use daily
    And you may want to think about a wood burning
    Cook stove old time thing you know

  • I love your home. I have a fascination with yurts and decorating them and camping in them and this is a wonderful outgrowth! I hope you continue with this blog:>. Thanks for putting this up.

  • Pingback: New cob kitchen documentation website: The House That Millet Built | The Year of Mud: Building a cob house()

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