Welcome to the FAQs page. Before reading through the FAQs, please note the answers provided ARE NOT set in stone. You along with other Community Founders will determine the design of our community as well as its rules and regulations. The answers are simply a starting point… thoughts to ponder.
WHERE IS THIS COMMUNITY LOCATED?
This is often the very first question most folks ask whenever we explain the RTYD concept and here’s our stock answer:
The community will be built in the most optimal location possible while still being affordable to most residents (think of the term ‘starving artist’). For this project to be successful, we need to attract the interest of enough folks who are more in love with the idea of what this community could be rather than the specific location in which it will eventually be built.
The location would need to meet the following criteria:
- Reasonably low property, sales, and income taxes
- Reasonably low cost of living
- Reasonable land cost
- Close (within 1 hour driving time) to an international airport
- Very close to good hospital(s) and medical facilities
- Short distance to cultural establishments
- Short distance to a college campus
- Neighboring communities must be excited to ‘adopt’ our community
- Marijuana tolerant
WILL THIS BE A 55+ COMMUNITY?
Yes. One member of the residence must be 55 or older and no other member can be under the age of 18. One adult child would be permitted to live in the residence with the qualifying member.
HOW BIG WILL THE COMMUNITY BE?
That’s a hard question to answer. As our vision states, we would like to have a community large enough to support its own town square along with amenities that would attract people to the community. What that number of residents needs to be will be determined as we get further along with the design and planning of the community. The hope is to design the community so that it can grow in stages as necessary.
One thing that is certain… the community will go forward as long as there are enough musicians (professional or amateur) interested in the community to facilitate a pretty steady diet of live performances and jams. It wouldn’t make much sense to create a community for musicians and artists (in addition to other folks who simply love live music and the arts) if there aren’t many musicians interested in the community, much the same as if you were creating a community for golphers when very few of the residents had any intention of golfing.
WHO WILL BE DOING THE ACTUAL ARCHITECTUAL DESIGN OF THE COMMUNITY?
Once the Community Founders come to some agreement on the general design and plan for the community, we will be looking to turn over the plan and design ideas to 1 or more architectural colleges to come up with the initial design. Many colleges are eager to have real life projects for their students to work on with the only cost to our community being out of pocket cost for travel, lodging, and meals when needed. We wouldn’t expect them to help us out and not cover any cost their involvement may incur.
In regards to the final design, we would search out architectural firms who have experience designing eco friendly and/or cooperative type communities.
We are hoping to attract members to the community who are at or near retirement that have experience in urban planning, architecture, building trades, and land development to help this effort. Likewise, we hope to have members who are experienced in sound design. This is going to be a large project and one that won’t happen overnight.
WILL THE COMMUNITY BE ECO FRIENDLY?
All buildings will be designed to significantly reduce energy costs for current residents and those who will follow. We believe Baby Boomers may be the last generation able to afford a respectable retirement and as such, will be most able to afford the initial additional cost required to build a truly eco friendly community. This community will be our legacy.
We plan on utilizing community solar and geothermal technologies to help power and heat the residences and public buildings.
WHAT TYPES OF AMMENITIES WILL THE COMMUNITY OFFER?
Once again the planned size of the community will determine the type and quality of amenities the community can offer. We hope to have one or more fitness centers, greenhouses, gardens, a multi-purpose clubhouse and buildings dedicated to music and art. This community will be designed to facilitate a healthy life style and generous interaction between its residents with bike trails and walking paths.
WHAT TYPES OF RESIDENCES WILL THE COMMUNITY OFFER?
We would like the community’s residences to be as diverse as the residents themselves. We hope to have lofts, condos, townhouses, single family homes, related living homes (what we lovingly refer to as commune homes) and rental apartments. Additionally we plan on having accommodations for our resident’s guest.
WILL THE RESIDENCES SUPPORT AGING IN PLACE?
Yes. All residences will be designed to easily accommodate the use of wheel chairs, scooters and walkers. Features will include zero threshold entries at all doorways as well as the shower. Showers will be oversized and include a hand held shower in addition to a conventional showerhead. While not initially installed, structural elements will be built into strategic points in the residences to allow for the installation of grab bars. Other features include wall outlets installed 6 to 12 inches higher off the floor, rocker panel light switches, lever style door handles, and windows being pre-wired to allow for the installation of remote controlled blinds.
WILL PETS BE ALLOWED?
Yes. The plan is to allow cats and dogs weighing less than 50 pounds. Residents will be responsible for cleaning up after their pets while walking them. Likewise, residents with fenced yards will be expected to clean up after their animals. Excessive barking (while outside the residence) will not be tolerated.
Dogs and cats will also be permitted in the community’s rental units as these units will be built using non-slip durable flooring.
Any pet attacking a resident, visitor or another person’s pet will not be permitted to stay in the community. Allowing pets to reside in the community is a privilege and pet owners must respect their fellow residents in ways noted above.
We also plan on having a designated fenced area for dog owners to gather to exercise their four-legged family members.
WHY IS THE COMMUNITY BEING CREATED AS A COOPERATIVE?
While there are many reasons for creating this community as a housing cooperative, the main reason would be affordability. Building it with private investment money would add an additional 15-25 percent to the price of a residence. After all, the investors would be in it to make a profit. This additional expense could put the cost of a unit out of reach for many folks.
Secondly, we want the community’s residents to have a personal stake in both the initial success of it being built and in its longevity.
Doing this as a cooperative also allows the community to screen prospective residents. We believe folks with musical or artistic talent should occupy a minimum of 20 percent of the residences. The success of the community, both initially and for generations to come, depends on it being home to many talented folks.
IS THERE A COOPERATIVE BOARD?
Yes and as with all communities of this nature, every member is encouraged to participate. The “board” will be in place to represent the totality of the owners. Among other duties and responsibilities, they will review and interview prospective residents, maintaining the ratio established to ensure enough active musicians to allow the community to flourish. The board will be elected by the ownership and act as directed by the majority of the owners, keeping within the goals and ideas as established by the mission statement.
WILL RESIDENTS BE REQUIRED TO VOLUNTEER TO HELP MAINTAIN THE COMMUNITY?
While we will not require residents to volunteer, we hope this community attracts the type of folks who are generous and caring, those who will take pride in this unique environment and what it represents. We also hope to offer paid employment for folks who need to work part-time in order to be semi-retired.
WILL THERE BE MONTHLY FEES OR ASSESSMENTS?
As with any type of community, it will be necessary to maintain common areas (sidewalks, landscaping, bike and walking trails, etc.) and provide certain services such as snow removal, leaf raking, trash collecting, recycling, etc. A monthly fee will be required to cover these costs. Our goal is to keep the costs as reasonable as possible and we plan on offering a “work credit” for some services. For example, if your area of expertise is gardening, you may provide those services in lieu of part of your monthly fee. We truly intend to make this a real community, one in which we can all contribute to the better good.
WHERE WILL MUSICIANS GATHER TO PLAY?
We will have ‘Garages’ built throughout the community for musicians to practice and for jam sessions. While we refer to them as garages, these buildings will be much more.
Each garage will be outfitted with quality sound reinforcement equipment, drum sets, various percussion instruments, microphones, and amplifiers. We hope community members will donate the majority of the equipment. We will gladly take any donations from folks who hear about us and just happen to have some used equipment hanging that could benefit the community.
Covered concrete patio areas for folks to socialize complete with tables, chairs, fire pits, and gas grills will surround these garages,
The garages will be well constructed and insulated in such a manner that the music happening within will not disturb anyone at night once the ‘garage door’ has been closed. There will also be comfortable benches built inside along two of the exterior walls. They will also be outfitted with countertops, a full size refrigerator, and AMPLE restroom facilities. Each garage will have a secure storage area for members to store their instruments should they choose to leave them.
Garages will also feature Wi-Fi and a check in-out feature so members of the community can easily see who’s hanging out or jamming via their smart phone.
…AND WHAT ABOUT THE ARTISTS?
Well that all depends on the type and number of artist the community attracts. Ideally we would love to have a small 500-seat multi-purpose performance theater built in our town square surrounded by several shared studios. We would also like to have open canvases on some of the garage walls (both inside and out) for painters to share and display their talents.
WHO CAN BE INVOLVED IN THE INITIAL DESIGN OF THE COMMUNITY?
Anyone who signs up as a Community Founder via this website can be involved in the initial design and planning of the community. When signing up you will be required to pay a $25.00 membership fee. For your twenty-five dollars, you will receive a RTYD t-shirt that we hope you will wear proudly at any event or location that tends to attract music-loving Baby Boomers. We hope to advertise and grow interest in our unique little community through your t-shirt wearing. Additionally, you will be given 100 RTYD business cards, each with a unique ID printed on the back, to hand out to folks who appear to be interested in the community. Should those folks subsequently visit the website, they will be asked to enter that unique ID. If you both purchase a residence at the RTYD community, you will be entitled to $4,000 discount on the purchase price of your unit. So wearing the shirt makes you a walking billboard of sorts, one that could prove to be very beneficial.
HOW DO I PROVIDE INPUT IN THE INITIAL DESIGN?
All Community Founders will be provided with a series of surveys asking for their preferences and/or opinions regarding certain design elements and amenities. This will enable us to hone the overall initial design of the community. Additional questionnaires will determine how much involvement each Community Founder would be willing to take on to advance the community. We also hope to garner information regarding the skills and expertise of the Community Founders to develop a talent resource pool.
WHEN WILL THIS COMMUNITY BE BUILT?
This is a very difficult question to answer without knowing exactly what the community is to be. What we can tell you is that we’d like to take 6 months to a year to recruit Community Founders. Remember, a Community Founder is anyone who signs up prior to the point in time where we begin to build the vision for the community. Realistically, this project as a cooperative will probably take 4 or 5 years from start to finish. Sure, it could get done faster through an experienced corporation but then we first have to find people willing to fund the project and they would most likely need to make a profit which as stated above will add to the cost, putting it out of reach for many people.
As we stated in the WHO CAN BE INVOLVED IN THE INITIAL DESIGN OF THE COMMUNITY question, you will need to pay a $25 fee to become a member. Why 25 dollars? Well, we look at it like this… if you’re not serious enough about the idea to invest 25 dollars why would we let you have a say in the design when you have no intention of actually living here.
The Rock Til You Drop Retirement Community will be paradise – an oasis for folks who just aren’t quite ready to hang up that “gone fishing” shingle. We definitely will be rocking and some of us will probably be rolling too.