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The Camp Meeting Movement as a Lean Archetype

The Camp Meeting ground is a land-use form particularly American, evolved to create community, integrating architecture, nature, and urban design using innate rules of human behavior. Camp Meeting grounds are the source for uses as diverse as resort villages, bungalow courts, trailer parks, condominiums, home owner’s associations, land trusts, even some town centers. They are also about self-building, occasional prefabrication, and compact, human-scaled structures. The ideas and social experiments, construction know-how and urban layouts have influenced the country for hundreds of years. The lessons still hold.

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Sara N. Hines is an architect and urbanist. She studied fine art and architecture at Washington University in St. Louis. Born in Memphis, Tennessee, she is now based in Ashland, Massachusetts, where she practices architecture, teaches at the Boston Architecture College, photographs, and researches old Camp Meeting grounds.