Build the Abbess’ Residence
Prajna Cottage Is Finished
Ven. Thubten Chodron, founding abbess of Sravasti Abbey, moved in in January.
She thanks everyone around the world who helped build the cottage for her and future abbesses and abbots.
Thank You Note from Ven. Chodron
Our Pend Oreille County building department did the final inspection on Prajna Cottage in early January. I moved in immediately, and I love the new home! As you may know, I was a little reluctant to approve this building, but I have to admit this: I was thrilled the first time I brushed my teeth without having to walk outside into the snow! Thank you so much for your support in bringing this project to fruition. Many people have wanted this to happen for a long time. I appreciate your encouragement and persistence in building a home that will last for future abbots or abbesses to use as well. Through your offering, may the Abbey continue for a long, long time to spread the Dharma and benefit living beings. With gratitude, Thubten Chodron
Project Completed January 2018
“Prajna” is Sanskrit for wisdom, suggesting that wisdom is necessary in leading a monastic community.
Prajna Cottage will be a small two-story dwelling with these features:
- Each floor is 616 square feet
- Ven. Chodron will live upstairs where there is work and living space, a small kitchenette, and bathroom with shower.
- All facilities are wheel-chair accessible.
- Downstairs has a small room for an attendant and storage.
- Following “green building” principles, Prajna Cottage will use the same Faswall and stucco construction that we used on Chenrezig Hall
- Prajna Cottage will be solar-powered, the Abbey’s first solar building
Prajna Cottage is not for Ven. Chodron alone. It’s the future residence of subsequent abbesses or abbots as well. And like all Abbey buildings, it will be built to last, with respect for the environment, and through the kindness of others.
Prajna Cottage Budget
|Engineering and Design||$ 3,300|
|Permits and Insurance||$ 2,700|
|Solar Panels & Installation||$ 21,000|
|Sales tax||$ 14,000|
|Contingency (10% of projected cost)||$ 24,000.|
Eco Depot will install a solar system for Prajna Cottage. According to their description, here’s how it works:
The panels change sunlight directly to electricity using solar cells. Every day, light hits the roof-top solar panel with photons (particles of sunlight). The solar panel converts those photons into electrons of direct current (“DC”) electricity.
The electrons flow out of the solar panel and into an inverter and other electrical safety devices. The inverter converts that “DC” power (commonly used in batteries) into alternating current or “AC” power. AC power is what runs computers and lamps.
A net energy meter keeps track of all the power the solar system produces. Any solar energy we do not use simultaneous with production will go back into the electrical grid through the meter.
At night or on cloudy days, when the system is not producing more than Prajna Cottage needs, the building will consume electricity from the grid as normal. Our PUD will bill us for the “net” consumption for any given billing period and give a dollar credit for any excess during a given period.
We can carry the energy bill credit forward for up to a year! The panels will definitely pay for themselves in just a few years, while the Abbey reduces our carbon footprint and enacts our values to be wise stewards of Earth’s resources.
Prajna Cottage’s above-grade walls will be built with Faswall with stucco siding. This is the same construction system we used for Chenrezig Hall.
The Faswall® green building system is among the most environment-friendly and healthy</a building materials available.
Faswall is made with nothing but 85% mineralized wood from recycled wood pallets and 15% cement.
Faswall is durable and energy efficient. And while highly resistant to rodents, insects and molds, it is a safe and vapor-permeable
Prajna House will sit at the top of the meadow between Chenrezig Hall and Gotami House, facing south.