MEHER MOUNT

9902 Sulphur Mountain Road
Ojai, CA 93023-9375

Phone: 805-640-0000
Email: info@mehermount.org

HOURS

Wednesday-Sunday: Noon to 5:00 p.m.
Monday & Tuesday: Closed

MANAGER/CARETAKERS

Buzz & Ginger Glasky

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Sam Ervin, Preident
Ron Holsey, Vice President
Ursula Reinhart, Treasurer
Jim Whitson, Director
Richard Mannis, Director

OFFICERS

Margaret Magnus, Secretary

9902 Sulphur Mountain Rd
Ojai, CA, 93023
United States

(805) 640-0000

Story Blog

Anecdotes, activities and stories about Meher Mount - past, present and future.

The Workshop - Ideas Expand & Contract

Margaret Magnus

By Margaret Magnus

In the beginning of the planning process for the Workshop, a number of ideas and building sites were discussed.

One idea included a two-story, wood-frame building with a future "dormitory" for overnight guests on the second floor. The dormitory raised issues of zoning, permits, bathroom facilities, and septic and water issues.

Another option was a Workshop built into the brow of the hill below the main building on what is called “the ring road.” It also called for a roof-top patio in view of the Topa Topa Bluffs. That option proved far too expensive with preliminary estimates in the neighborhood of $300,000. 

AN EARLY CONCEPT showed the workshop/garage built into the side of the hill along the "ring road" and included a roof-top patio. (Byron Pinckert conceptual drawing.)

The Board also went to the other extreme evaluating a plan to use one or more cargo containers as an interim solution for a garage/workshop for an estimated $10,000.

PURCHASING AND CONFIGURING two cargo containers for a garage and workshop was one interim and less costly option that was considered and then rejected. (Byron Pinckert conceptual drawing.)

All of these ideas were eventually determined not suitable for Meher Mount, its needs, and its finances.

THE BEST OPTION IS A CONCRETE BUILDING WITH A STEEL ROOF

THE FINAL CONCEPT is a workshop make of concrete and steel with an adjacent patio. (Byron Pinckert conceptual drawing.)

After a number of discussions about various options, the Board and Manager/Caretakers went back to the basic criteria for the Workshop:

  • A building made of "fireproof" or at least fire-resistant materials
  • Termite-proof materials
  • An accessible site that does not require much additional preparation
  • A building large enough to accommodate the tractor, a ride-on mower and tools, and a workshop area
  • Space for general storage that is easily accessible
  • Electrical outlets and lighting
  • Access to water
  • Low long-term maintenance

Based on these criteria, the Board chose to build a concrete building with a steel roof. It was to be built on the original site of the farmhouse/garage and the existing location of the "temporary" workshop.

Incorporating previous ideas, the conceptual design called for a patio beside the Workshop it that still had views of the Topa Topa Bluffs. 

THE PROPOSED BUILDING IS STILL EXPENSIVE

While the concrete-and-steel type of construction met the “fireproof” – or at least fire-resistant - requirements, it was expensive for Meher Mount. The Board decided the extra expense up upfront would help save upkeep expenses later and reduce the risk of termites.

This option required more than the $20,000 originally donated.

Fortunately, as the discussions on the Workshop had proceeded, donors added to the Workshop fund over the years reaching $122,075 for the project. 



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