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KCBX News Update: SLOMA sculpture removed, and SLO ranks as one of least affordable metros

Benjamin Purper
The Mamma Mobius sculpture was removed from the SLOMA lawn on Monday.

"Mamma Mobius" sculpture removed from SLOMA lawn

If you're headed into Downtown San Luis Obispo, you may notice a large art installation now missing from the lawn outside of the SLO Museum of Art.

A four-ton, red metal sculpture by artist Mark de Suvero was installed back in August and removed today. The sculpture, known as Mamma Mobius, is being rehomed to San Diego.

A new installation by New York artist Camille Hoffman will open in its spot in late May. That exhibition will focus on regional Filipino history.

SLO-Paso Robles area ranks as second-least affordable small metropolitan area in the country

San Luis Obispo is now being ranked as one of the least affordable places to live in the U.S. according to a recent data analysis from Porch, an online home improvement and buying advice website.

The analysis shows the SLO-Paso Robles area as the second least affordable small metro area in the country, right behind Napa, California. Santa Cruz was ranked as the third least affordable.

Porch’s analysis shows San Luis Obispo’s cost of living to be 9.5 percent higher than the national average. The cost of housing is shown to be nearly 52 percent higher than the average.

Architect gives talk highlighting efforts to bring tiny homes to San Luis Obispo

A Cal Poly graduate and lifelong architect gave a talk over the weekend in San Luis Obispo about how cohousing could help solve homelessness.

Charles Durrett designs housing projects that prioritize community. Often his projects involve a group of tiny homes centered around a communal space that he believes helps encourage accountability and togetherness.

Durrett is working with Hopes Village, a nonprofit homeless services group in San Luis Obispo, to make a project like this happen locally.

At the presentation, Durrett said his projects are typically fully funded by sponsors and government groups that allow people experiencing homelessness to move into these homes and stay there affordably.

“[I] found plenty of sites that would be perfect, absolutely perfect in San Luis Obispo and San Luis Obispo County for making a little village," Durrett said.

People opposed to community housing projects often cite concerns about neighborhood impact like trash build up or a drop in their home’s value.

But Durrett says these cohousing projects have plenty of benefits, saving taxpayers up to $50-thousand-dollars a year per homeless person in policing efforts alone.

“It would actually help the town economically, and it’s so interesting to me when you get the ball rolling locally how the energy and the interest compounds to the point that you can make things happen," Durrett said.

Benjamin Purper came to KCBX in May of 2021 from California’s Inland Empire, where he spent three years as a reporter and Morning Edition host at KVCR in San Bernardino. Dozens of his stories have aired on KQED’s California Report, and his work has broadcast on NPR's news magazines, as well. In addition to radio, Ben has worked as a newspaper reporter and freelance writer.
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