St. Marys Property

In October 2011, the Bonnell Building Project purchased a piece of property in the center of Fairfield, only a few blocks from the town square and a short walk from the Maharishi University of Management. The property, which was previously occupied by St. Mary’s Catholic Church, includes a five-bedroom home, a 15,000 square foot school building with a large commercial kitchen, and a 1500-square-foot workshop building on 1.7 acres of land.

The property was purchased to serve as a community living/learning space as well as a project to demonstrate urban sustainability and the possibilities that exist for creating thriving, sustainable communities in existing urban environments.

We believe this project is a positive step in the direction of community development, self-empowerment and sustainability, and builds on the success to date of the Bonnell Building Project.

Planned Usage of the Property
In addition to supporting the overall mission of the Bonnell Building Project, the St. Mary’s property will provide a space for participants to live and learn together in a supportive learning community. As with the Bonnell Building, the St. Mary's property will be home to a variety of projects growing out of participants' passions, including but not limited to sustainability, art, music, and social entrepreneurship. We will also be providing a variety of living spaces for community members, including MUM students, graduates, and others, in a building that will be retrofitted to have a minimal environmental impact. Project participants will develop to higher levels of functioning, individually and collectively, and attain knowledge and skills to function within and create high-functioning communities.

Specifically, project participants will design systems and create a culture aligned with principles resulting in healthy interdependence for all aspects of human communities - governance, economics, education, food production and processing, built environment, health - and integrating with the natural environment.

Our plans include retrofitting the property to harvest rain water, utilize solar hot water, generate renewable energy, and produce food.

How To Get Involved
Information on specific projects is available at the Bonnell University website, or you can get on our email list by sending an email to