VESTA Community Concepts
Written by {ga=Admin}    Monday, 06 June 2011 22:54   
Economics & Enterprise

We are a marketing/design think tank developing innovative urban community-oriented housing concepts. We're an eclectic group of pioneers, change agents, designers, entrepreneurs guided to provide innovative housing solutions for people seeking to live smaller, greener and closer together in community.

Our first project is an urban prototype called Vesta. (named after the Roman Goddess of hearth & home) This intergenerational mixed-use development located in Phoenix shows a vision for a "neighborhood of the future". We worked closely with architect Jillian Brooks from Taliesin West for 6 months designing this eco village on a vacant 5 acre parcel for between 25-50 people. Vesta is a hybrid that takes some of the best aspects of cohousing and combines it with other models to create something new.

We are excited to develop VESTA here in Phoenix for the next generation of people interested in community-oriented development.

Our think tank also explores adaptive reuse or converting existing housing stock, apartments or pocket neighborhoods into collaborative living communities. This could also include providing housing for targeted populations with special needs.

We are passionate about designing communities that are sustainable in every sense--physically, socially and financially. A place where people can truly THRIVE together.

VESTA Community Concepts is proud to support the mission of the FUSION Foundation as a local business with global reach. We are excited to align with other organizations here in the Valley that call forth new possibilities and provide solutions for today's complex challenges. We are proud to be part of that collective vision.

Vesta Community Concepts was founded by Claudia Hartman and Donna Niemann, 50 something, single, educated entrepreneurs living in Phoenix, Arizona. Like millions of others affected by the economy, they started seriously re-evaluating the toll it takes to live independently. Since there is a void of collaborative living options available in Phoenix, Claudia and Donna decided to do some first hand research on what was available elsewhere.  Last September, they borrowed a van, called the Guppy, travelled 2, 500 miles across four states to interview 20 established Cohousing communities to learn best practices in the area of design, affordability, sustainability and governance.  The background and initial findings from their trip can be found on the blog This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Upon their return to Phoenix, Donna and Claudia (aka the 2 CHICKS) were fortunate to partner up with Jillian Brooks, a young architect studying at Taliesin. (Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture)  They collaborated closely with Jillian giving her the program, scope and best practices they observed from their trip. The three of them created a vision for a "neighborhood of the future" on a 5-acre vacant parcel of land in Phoenix conveniently located near key amenities, public transportation, stores and a park. Their vision of VESTA serves as an example of what could be possible in a collaborative living model. Another key component to the vision of VESTA is to incorporate local sustainable agriculture since growing food is so integral to building and maintaining community.

The team is currently getting pricing for Vesta, putting together a performa and advisory team.
Claudia and Donna just launched their "BIRDS of a FEATHER" campaign on Facebook calling out to others interested in building a community here.

To become a fan go to their facebook page:



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