Author Archives: Acequia Jardin

About Acequia Jardin

Acequia Jardin is a small co-housing compound in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Designed for downsizing baby boomers, we created a vibrant neighborhood through thoughtful design and community-decisionmaking.

How Downsizing Made Me a Better Person

A friend and colleague of mine, Marianne, and I began talking about downsizing 4 years ago. Being strangled by our “stuff” and having to search far and wide in our own homes to find that book we were reading 3 days ago, we decided it was “all too much”.

I call myself a Boomer on the Cusp.  I’m just a few years younger that the majority of the boomers who are living longer with more energy and vitality.  Some are even living wiser and potentially with less — which is actually more. And, I’m viewing the changes in living undertaken by these boomers that is creating more.   More freedom, more time, more breathing space.  Can’t you feel it now ahhhhhhhhhhhh!

ImageDownsizing physically, mentally, spiritually, psychically is a path to not only more freedom, but potentially a path to a longer and higher quality of life.  And we boomers and boomers on the cusp need to embrace it.  Maybe all of us do.

Many more projects will come of this reflection and paring down, yet now, for Marianne and 9 other homeowners, we have developed and are building a community of small homes that live so very large.  At 800-900 sq ft, with shared community amenities, Acequia Jardin is potentially the way of future living and thriving for vital persons of the baby boom generation.  Please, please,please do not call them seniors.  None of us like it.  It just doesn’t fit anymore. And we are aging, but aging with a new attitude.  I hope to lead the way.

And, if you’re a wise boomer — check out Acequia Jardin in Albuquerque, New Mexico.   A thoughtful design and vibrant community of downsizers..


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For the Boomer Different — a Place to Joyfully Age

cropped-mailbox1.jpgFor those of you who missed it, The Albuquerque Journal wrote a lovely article describing our community on Rio Grande.  Click on the link for a copy of the article.

Journal Article 12.2.12

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Downsizing and Simplifying — Acequia Jardin in the News Again!!

The Albquerque Journal, in their Live Well Magazine for boomers, just published an article on simplifying and downsizing.    Acequia Jardin was featured.

Example of what homes and courtyard will look like.

Example of what homes and courtyard will look like.

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Acequia Jardin in the News!!

Garrett Smith to build Acequia Jardin

New Mexico Business Weekly by Steve Ginsberg, Reporter

Date: Friday, September 28, 2012, 2:55pm MDT

Architect Garrett Smith is transforming an old farmhouse and field in Albuquerque’s North Valley into a 10-home “pocket neighborhood” called Acequia Jardin, according to a news release. Pictured is the site at which the project will be developed.

The project’s developer is Casas Jardines LLC, a collaboration between Smith, realtor Pamela Heater and activist/designer Marianne Dickinson. The project targets baby boomers ready to downsize from larger homes. The compound is located at 2334 Rio Grande Blvd. NW, adjacent to the North Valley’s La Montanita Co-op.

Home sizes will range from 800 to 1,200 square feet, and prices range from $190,000 to $245,000. Construction is expected to begin by January and completed by midsummer 2013. Two of the 10 homes have been reserved so far, according to the release.

Smith will be the general contractor as well as architect, and Heater is handling sales and marketing. Site and floor plans, home features and options can be viewed at

The homes will be clustered around a central plaza tucked behind the renovated farmhouse. The acequia that once fed the long-fallow field is being put to use for a large vegetable and herb garden and fruit trees.

Acequia Jardin incorporates elements of new co-housing and pocket neighborhood developments, like smaller houses designed to encourage interaction among residents while maintaining privacy. Front porches, shared spaces like courtyards or green commons, clustered parking instead of attached garages, community gardens, common activity spaces and guest rooms for visitors are part of Smith’s design.

Smith is a veteran Duke City architect who has done both private and public projects. He is the designer of several recent Duke City multifamily projects, including Downtown @700 2nd and the conversion of the Sundowner Motel for New Life Homes.

For information contact Pamela Heater 505.710.0021,

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