I am a house owners and a urban designer.
I live in a house I bought years ago, in the heart of a city where we were already starting to see the development of new residential neighborhoods and the revitalization of old neighborhoods.
I also am a home owner in an area where I am an avid walker, but that doesn’t mean I can’t create something new in a different way.
That’s the kind of person I am, and that’s the way I’m going to approach designing my home, says architect and home owner Stephanie Johnson.
Johnson lives in Washington’s Mount Vernon neighborhood, which is one of the poorest parts of the city, with a population of just over 1,000.
“The problem with my neighborhood is that it has a lot of vacant land, and it’s hard to find decent homes to rent,” she says.
Johnson and her husband are homeowners, but she says that is not the main reason why she decided to become an architect.
“I just love being around people, and I wanted to make my own way,” she adds.
Johnson says her love for architecture began while growing up in the suburbs, but when she was in high school, she discovered an online community of young people who were passionate about building.
“It was really exciting to get out and meet all of the people who would help me build something,” she explains.
Johnson describes her first project, a two-bedroom home on a private lot in the city’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, as a first attempt at building a home that would stand out from the neighborhood.
She says it wasn’t until she started looking at other people’s homes that she realized that she was not alone in her desire to create a new home.
“People were all about the same things: It’s an urban setting, it’s a house,” she recalls.
Johnson, who has also designed homes in New York City, London, London and Paris, says she wanted to build a home where she could be part of a more inclusive neighborhood.
“This is a place where people are not only talking about the diversity of our neighborhoods, but we’re actually creating and maintaining our own communities,” she points out.
Johnson hopes her home will become a permanent fixture in the community.
“If I get to be a homeowner, I want to be the one that’s doing the work, the one who is leading and helping people in their communities, so they have that experience,” she tells ABC News.
The problem in Mount Vernon Johnson’s home is that the neighborhood has so many vacant lots.
Johnson has created a plan for the neighborhood that includes using the vacant lots to create more sustainable housing.
She is also working on a project with the city to find vacant properties and use them for commercial space.
Johnson said she hopes that her design will become part of the fabric of the neighborhood, something that will make it feel more like a part of Washington, DC than just a place for a home buyer.
“In the city of Mount Vernon, it used to be that we had to go and buy a home from the city.
And that was the norm,” she notes.
Johnson’s proposal would also allow for the city and private developers to buy and develop lots of vacant lots and use the money to create residential communities.
Johnson said she is not only passionate about the city she lives in, but also about building and creating more sustainable communities in the region.
“I want to do something different here in Washington, and what I am doing is not just creating a house, I’m creating a new community,” she continues.
Johnson is looking for feedback on her plan to get more affordable housing into the community and to help create an even better place for the young people she hopes to attract.
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