In its day, Eastland Mall was one of the destination shopping malls in the Carolinas. It served east Charlotte since 1975 until it’s demolition in 2010 and ever since, city leaders have struggled with what to do with the site. The 69 remaining acres were once thought to be a movie studio but those plans quickly faded. Out of ideas, the Charlotte City Council and Planning have turned to host’s of the popular TV show Tiny House Housing on the FYI network for a solution: creating Charlotte’s first Tiny House community.
The project solves the problem of affordable housing in Charlotte as each property will be available with a tiny plot of land for a very reasonable price. This will also attract hipsters and millenials to the neighborhood, who romanticize the idea of living in less than 300 sq ft.
“I was a art history major in college but the only job I could find to utilize my skills was working at a bar in NoDa. I make great tips but the cost of keeping my man bun tightly bunned and my beard oiled makes paying rent a tough task. With my Tiny House, I see this as my opportunity to finally get a place on my own” said Atticus Smith.
To get around Charlotte’s ordinance not allowing mobile homes on the site, the Tiny House Nation hosts have come up with an ingenious plan: shipping containers.
“Shipping Containers can still be moved for the target demographic’s mobile lifestyle but they’re more stable than our usual utility trailer frame. Plus, they’re in abundance since the United States won’t be importing so many things from other countries” said one of the show’s producers.
There will be two types of container home: a single story and a more adventurous 2 story model. Owners will be given the option of a DIY approach, where can decorate and design the interior to their specifications or opt to have a designer lay the unit out for them. For that task, the Tiny House folks have taken inspiration from the popular HGTV show Fixer Uppr, with options including shiplap walls, coffered ceilings, arched door ways, and painted cabinetry.
The new neighborhood will have attractive features like a pad for a brewery, dog park, and outdoor gathering space.
Tiny Houses are expected to start at $135,000, which includes the shipping container and a 20×50′ tiny lot. They also require the use of a landline phone since the cellular signals tend to not work as well inside the metal containers.
The City Council is expected to approve this plan at an upcoming meeting.