Touchstone EcoVillage



waters of life

Watch a trailor of the Film about Touchstone
Dancing With Angels


Touchstone Farm and Center is in the process of creating an eco-village style village
 of about ten homes in Easthampton. 

The eco-village is located one mile from Easthampton Center and five miles from Northampton Center.

The village is deeply influenced by the permaculture model.
The word permaculture, as envisioned by itís creator, Bill Mollison of Australia, is actually derived from the words permanent (sustainable) and culture (the phenomenon of humankindís relationship to one another and the environment around them).

The eco-village is situated on over fourteen acres of land that is already the strong foundation of a permaculture style village. A permaculture style village (or an eco-village) is a village that is based upon a balance and harmony with the land and all of its inhabitants --- from the turtle and the spider to the trees and the humans. The intent is to be as energy and food efficient and self-sufficient as is possible within the constraints of budget and availability.



THE VILLAGE PROPER

The village proper consists of about four acres of land. There are three single home lots and two duplex lots.  Which means we are building seven new homes.  The village will host about nine homes--- including the existing Colonial and the Touchstone Farm House.

 Each home-owner will own their own plot of land independently. In this way everyone will maintain and increase appropriately their equity. The only qualification we intend upon putting upon the lots is the right of first refusal for ninety days at fair market value -- if and when the people who are living in the home
decide to sell and move.

THE COMMONS

About six acres of open-space land will be held by deed in common.
This commons land consists of about an acre orchard of mixed varieties of apple trees, an open meadow,
a large vegetable garden,
and a wooded area and marsh that is currently a bird sanctuary with pathways winding through it.
There are numerous trees, fruits, berries and perennial vegetables and herbs already established and flourishing on the commons land.

There is an 1800ís vintage post and beam barn which will be held in common by the village home-owners .
The barn has a double hay loft, a carriage area, three horse stalls
and ample side rooms and sheds to house chickens and sheep.
The intention is to maintain the barn as both a common library and as a place to house animals should we decide that it is wise to have horses for work and joy and fertilizer; chickens for eggs, fertilizer and insect control; and sheep for fertilizer, for wool and milk and to mow our lawns. (There is a variety of sheep which may be milked and as well as provide a source for gathering wool.)

This map is a close approximation of the Touchstone Eco-Village layout.


a plot map of the village

THE HOMES

The homes will be cottage or New England farm-house style.
 They are intended to be in the neighborhood of one thousand to twelve hundred square feet of living space. They will be above the Energy Star Standards
and designed with passive solar and high insulation value in mind.

home

The project is being carried and guided by and the homes will be built by
 Doug Kohl of Kohl Construction.
Doug is a well-known and respected business person and developer who has already built a number of high quality energy-conscious co-housing villages and homes in our area.
 Following a connotative guideline, Doug will --- along with the new home-owners --- co-design each house.

The estimated cost of each home is in the neighborhood of $170 per square foot of living space.
The estimated cost of owning a home in the Eco-Village is $240,000 to $300,000.

As ever, Touchstone is involved in creating new ways of being and becoming on this earth.
We are engaged in creating new ways of alternative home ownership, living and finance.


Cape
The Cape

Two  Story Single Home
a Two Story Single Home

Caoe Dulpex
a Cape Duplex

Dulex Prototype
Duplex Prototype




FINANCING THE COMMONS MAINTENANCE

In order to maintain the commonly held lands and buildings,
each home-owner will be asked a monthly dues of fifty dollars
plus twenty-five dollars per adult resident.
These funds will be held and managed by the home-owners themselves.
They are intended to be used towards maintenance and repair of the land and the common buildings
as well as for investment in future sustainable technologies and practices.

If the home-owners mutually decide at some future time, this figure may increase or decrease
according to the home-ownersí desires and needs.
Of course, the home-owners may as time passes decide to co-invest in special projects
in an attempt to be energy and food self-sufficient as is feasible.



THE SOCIOLOGICAL ENVIRONMENT

At the center of the village is Touchstone Farm Center,
a locally well-known eco-socio-political arts and healing center
as well as a non-denominational eclectic spiritual retreat area and organic market garden
with several acres of landscaped gardens of mixed flowers, herbs, fruits and vegetables.
Touchstone is known in Canada, Europe, South America and in the US
 as a center of Sacred Dance
and as a haven of simple living in community.

The homes are not technically on the open market.
Anja and Deborah, co-owners and directors of Touchstone,
will meet with the people who are interested in a home in the eco-village.
We are seeking certain qualities in the people
 who wish to purchase homes here at the Touchstone village.
We are not looking for a common belief or activity.
We are, however, looking for people
who will have the capacity of communicating  easily and without defensiveness.
 People who are naturally eclectic in spirit.
People who are not overly judgmental or critical.
 People who have a natural awareness of energy conservation and environmental harmony.
And an appreciation of Sacred Place and a depth of heart.
Smudgy Angels.

In this way -- by inviting people with these qualities to purchase homes here in the village --
we will create an environment in which endless bylaws and collective meetings will be minimized --
but rather simple and open communication from the heart,
an honoring of the earth, and a holding of Sacred Space will suffice.
This mode of living is at the center of all that Touchstone has been and is becoming.
We have been hosting an intentional community based upon this model for two decades.
 It makes for a very rich and easy community life.
We often refer to ourselves as "a community of hermits who happen to like people"?

.
More about the Colonial Home
Also,
here is a link to the Touchstone Movie Site
Also,
here is a link to the
Main Page
of
Touchstone Farm and Center
.
If you are interested in discussing the possibility of owning a home

or of co-owning a homein an eco-village style community
of hermits who happen to like people
please do contact us.
And let's explore!

Touchstone Farm & Center
132 West Street
Easthampton, Massachusetts   01027 413-527-8723


the email address