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Living in a pod? New concept in affordable shared housing emerges in Palo Alto

Original post made on May 4, 2022

Its name has the cachet of a trendy Brooklyn home, but Brownstone Shared Housing has brought a new housing concept that is affordable, albeit small, to Palo Alto.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, May 3, 2022, 1:29 PM

Comments (8)

Posted by PeaceLove
a resident of Shoreline West
on May 4, 2022 at 7:39 pm

PeaceLove is a registered user.

I love how these folks present an extremely dystopian present as some kind of twee hipster move. The next step will be Black Rock, which is currently buying up many of the available houses around the country, converting them to corporate-run pods (essentially, storage units for humans) to rent to desperate people for $800/month.

Posted by Eva
a resident of Old Mountain View
on May 5, 2022 at 10:03 pm

Eva is a registered user.

This is nothing new. It’s just coffin housing from Hong Kong imported to Palo Alto and dressed up in a chic farmhouse aesthetic.

Posted by Katherine
a resident of another community
on May 21, 2022 at 1:08 am

Katherine is a registered user.

I saw this story linked on Facebook a couple of weeks ago & I was impressed with the idea. I shared the article to a group I belong to which advocates for the homeless. The reaction astounded me. Though only about 4-5 people commented, each of them was very critical. I don't understand the hard objections - especially from one person who claimed to have been previously homeless & another person who heads up an organization that provides assistance to & advocacy for the homeless. The only conclusions I can come to are that people: 1) see the photo of the sleeping pods & assume the pod is the only rented space (based on similar images in other articles or personal experiences in hostels or pod living; 2) and/or who have been privileged & have not had to struggle & see this as an odd & unacceptable way to live; 3) and/or tend to have very firm internalized rules about how Americans live, which includes strict zoning laws for business, industry, & residential areas (and those paths should never cross), and homes (whether rented or owned) are designed for a single family to reside.

Having lived in & toured Europe, I came to see alternative ideas when countries have struggled with large populations & limited available land space. "Necessity is the mother of all invention."

Also, having experienced tremendous financial struggles for many years & finally ending up homelessness, I've come to a place in my life where I want to end this needless suffering & travesty that is growing to epidemic proportions in the US - especially so in California. It is clear that everything we have done so far has had little to no success & it's time for thinking outside of our limited parameters.

I thought the idea was brilliant! This has so much potential for several types of populations (students, interns, techies moving into the area, former inmates who are trying to get their lives back together, and even homeless folks transitioning to more permanent housing) & business owners.

Posted by LongResident
a resident of another community
on May 23, 2022 at 4:19 pm

LongResident is a registered user.

It does indeed remind one of a homeless shelter--one that charges for beds. $800 per month is a lot to charge for a bed in a homeless shelter with food not included. Beds and meals are usually free. So that's probably what upsets people in the homeless support group.

It sounds to me like a a gimmick as a way to charge more for renting a room in a house. Once a room rental was $275 per month and that included sharing parts of the rest of the house, with only a few others. Housing prices are up. This is a way to charge $5000 a month for multiple people sleeping in that same shared room. You just put "pods" into it. Gimmick.

Posted by Randy Guelph
a resident of Cuernavaca
on May 23, 2022 at 4:43 pm

Randy Guelph is a registered user.

My man, are you honestly claiming that people are paying a premium for this? Are you going to say it's a "status symbol" again? I'm completely gobsmacked by you.

Posted by Leslie Bain
a resident of Cuesta Park
on Jun 5, 2022 at 4:02 pm

Leslie Bain is a registered user.

14 people times $800 a month = $11,200 a month * 12 = $134,400 a year.

Pretty nice income just for simply owning a home in Palo Alto. I can see why "the landlord liked the concept."

This idea does not "make housing in the Bay Area affordable." It might work for students and/or interns, but that's it. Imagine the pods being rented by multiple persons who are parents ... sounds like fun! Not. And the renters don't even get a curtain? Yikes!

"Everyone who stays with us has loved the experience." I find this statement very difficult to believe.

Posted by JAFO
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 5, 2022 at 4:06 pm

JAFO is a registered user.

This will only work for those living elsewhere and traveling to the local offices for a couple of days. This is NOT a housing system.

Posted by JAFO
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Jun 6, 2022 at 12:40 pm

JAFO is a registered user.

By the way what ever happened regarding the California apartment Associations use of the Mountain View Fire Fighters PAC contributing to the campaigns of the City Council?

This was reported by this publisher here (Web Link

They required a warning letter in the past if you read the WARNING letter here (chrome-extension://efaidnbmnnnibpcajpcglclefindmkaj/Web Link

What ever happened to the FPPC investigation?

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