Thursday, October 13, 2011

The UCSC 'Parkies'

The trailer park on UC Santa Cruz property feels like it has always been there. Sitting silently among the Redwoods, the trailers lean: brilliantly painted hubs with miniature garden plots. The casual calm of the foot traffic seemed light-years away from the bustle of the campus plazas.

My sister recently moved into the trailer park and sent me the article titled "Meet the 'Parkies': UCSC Camper Park offers unique, tight-knt community" from the Silicon Valley news:


The trailer park is located north of Kresge College and west of Heller Drive. It started in the early 1980s during a housing shortage. Students were parking RVs and trailers in campus parking lots and started several trailer parks in the woods. This the only known trailer park left. There is a long-term plan to use the land for student dormitory housing but no moves have been made yet.

There are 42 spaces and a central facility with laundry facilities, a kitchen, restrooms, and showers. The residents share chores, maintenance, skills, and bi-weekly potluck dinners (Wednesday/Sunday). When a resident moves out, they sell the trailer for $3,000-$3,500 to the next person on the 30-80 person waitlist. When this new resident moves out, they sell it for a couple hundred dollars less and so on and so fourth. The monthly fee is $500/month or $556 for those with a sewer connection (~$300 cheaper per month than the cheapest dorm). The residents are self-proclaimed "parkies." They have a "Trailer Park Olympics" every year with"unconventional competitions."

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