MHK Housing update

Brandon C. Irwin, MHK Affordable Housing Community Action Group On March 7th, 2017, the Manhattan City Commission adopted a Rental Registration Ordinance (see Rental Program on city website). The program will require landlords to provide information including rental unit address, number of dwelling units associated with that address, owner’s name and contact information, and certification…

Big trouble in the Little Apple – Affordable Housing

MY problem is that I didn’t have a place to live. Most rental properties in Manhattan don’t fit my needs, are overpriced, or, more likely, both. I couldn’t afford a new house, nor did I want to lock myself into a 30 year mortgage on top of my $90k student loans. Just your typical millennial,…

Tiny House Progress Report – Trailer Prep

Prepping the trailer was quite the project. It took roughly two and a half weeks to complete, working intermittently around the weather and other responsibilities. I’m going to share what this process was like- the unique challenges we faced, how we overcame them, and suggestions for other tiny house builders. Trailers and tiny houses Choosing the…

Tiny house Progress Report: Planning Phase

At last, it’s time… The tiny house shows emphasize the building process, but 1) rarely do justice to the planning phase and 2) are typically very generic so as to be generalizable for tiny house planners in different communities. In this post, I want to share with you my experience of planning my tiny house…

The ultimate undergrad assignment?

Engaging students in and outside the classroom is hard. Much of this is due to the challenge of making class concepts relevant and applicable to students’ lives. This year, however, I discovered policy briefs. And I think they might be the holy grail of student assignments that can, and should, be used in any discipline. Here, I’d like…

It’s official- Brandon builds a tiny house!

Today I put a deposit on a trailer for my tiny house, making it the first significant expense I’ve made and one that I would have a hard time turning back on. In other words, “it’s on”. In this post, I want to share a little bit about what my goal for this project is,…

Life and travel- A breif risk assessment

I was doing some work on my computer  in a coffee bar in Amsterdam and, overhearing a conversation next to me, asked the woman, Cindy, if she knew where I could find some good live music that night. That question turned into breakfast at her house the next day with her husband, trading musical tastes, a…

Fake it ’till you shake it…

I was sitting next to a French couple in a small bar called Pastis in Barcelona one night. (Pastis, by the way, was one of the coolest bars I’ve ever been in. Barely bigger than your closet, Tim Burton-esque accoutrement, an accordion-vocals duo, and, of course, homemade pastis- a liquor made from anise. Basically tastes…

Ethical and healthy eating in Manhattan, KS

If you’re like many Americans, you’re frustrated with the current food system and inability of politicians to make meaningful food policy changes (if you’re not yet, just watch any of the 1,000 food documentaries on Netflix and you will be). However, you can ‘vote’ with your food choices. I’m going to tell you how I…