Sustainable Affordable Safety Cottage Pilot Project

 A project designed to embody as many Santa Barbara City high level policy goals as possible
in one integrated, optimized design, 12 min walk from SBCC. This is intended as a step towards
open source templates for sustainable, affordable workforce housing in our area. 

Summary here and video related to the project below...Contact us for more information.

On this page:



The City’s sustainability and affordability policies taken to the next level, integrated, and optimized in five affordable micro-units on West Ortega Street.

This pilot project could benefit Santa Barbara by providing data and replicable templates for:


The City’s recent commitments to sustainability are outstanding policy achievements. Work remains to be done on implementation; to make the most sustainable projects easier to permit, for example.
The designs, land, and funding for phase one of this project are in hand. If you are a regulator, we hope you will be inspired to partner with us to actualize its full potential to benefit the City, and build Santa Barbara’s environmental leadership. This community benefit project could be one of the top demonstrations of integrated solutions for climate, water, fire, transportation and affordability in North America.


Details in full proposal (available on request) video and more info below.



Adobe Safety Cottage Fly Through Video



Adobe Building Resists Debris Flow (video)

The Orella Adobe stands strong in debris up to its roof as a wooden house floats by. The high water was 2-3' higher than in the video. The adobe had driftwood on the roof and feet of mud inside and out afterwards, but did not dissolve and is still standing. This is the January 20, 2017 debris flow near El Capitan on the Gaviota Coast.



Stormwater infiltration at 100x usual performance target (video)

Based measurements on the site and at the already built project in this video, we estimate that the site could infiltrate 1" of rain in ten minutes. This is so much higher than the usual performance target that it may be hard to believe. Here's evidence on video (short version below, full version here).


Stormwater infiltration demo and discussion with local decision makers, regulators, and researchers (video)

The demonstration was attended by 30 professionals including our state congressional delegation, the heads of several local water-related agencies, local non-profits, educators and students (short version below, full version here).


More info

<Page in progress, check back for more details later>

About Us

E mail us

Links to some of the design features incorporated:




Eco Home Checklist (pdf)

Principles of Ecological Design (article)

Ecological Systems Design

Ecological design examples

Can a 4000 ft2 Home be Green?

Live Better, Waste Less

Oasis design specialties

Adobe Safety Cottage Seismic Test

Water Conservation Central


Grey Water Central

Laundry to Landscape

What does driving cost?

Healthy is Sexy: Bike!






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