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One Potential Piece In Keys Housing Puzzle: Tiny Homes

A rendering for one of the 'tiny homes' that could be built on county-owned land in the Keys.
Monroe County
A rendering for one of the 'tiny homes' that could be built on county-owned land in the Keys.

When Hurricane Irma slammed across the Lower Keys as a Category 4 storm last year, it hammered what passes for affordable housing — mobile homes and older structures that weren't elevated.

For people who are left with a piece of land but not a lot of money to rebuild, Monroe County plans to commission four tiny homes as a pilot project.

The idea is to build the homes on county land as examples, and eventually rent them to county employees.

At its Wednesday meeting in Key Largo, the county is scheduled to consider approving four contracts totaling $656,000 to build four homes on county-owned lots in Key Largo, Ramrod Key, Cudjoe Key and Big Coppitt Key.

That doesn't include the cost of the land, which the county already owns.

All four would be built to withstand flood waters and wind forces.

County staff said they hope the homes will serve as models for individuals who want to build sustainable, but not expensive, new homes on the island chain, where land is at a premium. According to Zillow.com, the median home value in Monroe County is $562,600.

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Nancy Klingener covers the Florida Keys for WLRN. Since moving to South Florida in 1989, she has worked for the Miami Herald, Solares Hill newspaper and the Monroe County Public Library.
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