You’d go a long way to find a purpose-built, permaculture-inspired, organically certified econeighbourhood like Bend. With those credentials, you might expect a remote location, miles from anywhere, but Bend is located in a major town on the NSW Far South Coast, near schools, shops, a post office, library and medical facilities. The aim of this intentionalliving project was to build community, not just build ‘a community’.
‘Bend is integral to the town of Bega. We wanted to be inclusive and diverse, and part of the town,’ says Jenny Spinks, who was active throughout the project and now lives there. The eco-subdivision was intentionally medium density, with twothirds of the houses privately owned, and the remaining onethird purpose-built for affordable housing rental.
The eco-neighbourhood of 30 houses harvests and reuses its own water, mandates composting toilets and runs on permaculture ethics and consensus decision-making. Ideally, being in town allows a further reduction in ecological footprint, through less car use.