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New tiny houses crop up in the Nickelsville Georgetown village

Six youth-built structures joined the city-sanctioned village last week

Ryan Patterson/Olson Kundig

The Nickelsville Georgetown tiny house village just gained some additional family housing. Six new structures built by local high school students include two tiny houses “designed to accommodate a larger family” and three single-family tiny homes, plus wheelchair-accessible ramps.

These tiny houses will welcome families through Nickelsville, a long-running series of homeless encampments that started becoming sanctioned by the city in 2015 due to a lack of low-barrier shelter options. Not being able to stay with a partner or family is a common barrier to entering the shelter system.

Nickelsville manages the day-to-day at the site, fiscally-sponsored by the Low Income Housing Institute. The village first opened in March, and will eventually include 40 houses.

The homes were built through Sawhorse Revolution’s Impossible City project, which creates collections of moveable tiny houses built (and sometimes designed) by youth for people experiencing homelessness. Architecture firm Olson Kundig sponsors the project and helped with the initial designs.

The project has built 13 structures at city-sanctioned homeless encampments so far.

Another tiny house village opened in Othello last year, joining similar villages in the Central District and Ballard, all managed by Nickelsville.

A point-in-time count in January found that more than 11,000 people are experiencing homelessness in Seattle, including 5,485 without official shelter. That latter number included 237 children.


3307 3rd Ave W., Seattle, WA 98119