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Michael Corbett describes their early experience developing the Village Homes project: “When I first presented the concept plan for Village Homes to the then city planning director for the City of Davis, she sat back in her chair and started to laugh.  ‘This goes against everything I learned in planning school.  Change all of it and come back and then we can talk,’ she responded.  What is remarkable, I was able to get about ninety percent of what was on that original plan.” (Francis 2003, 19)

The Corbetts submitted their plans to city officials and were barraged with skepticism and roadblocks.  Judy Corbett recalls, “Everybody had a problem.  The police department didn't like the dead-end cul-de-sacs. The fire department didn't like the narrow streets. The public-works department didn't like agriculture mixing with residential. And the planning department picked it apart endlessly.” (SOURCE)

Securing financing proved to be another major challenge for the Corbetts, who approached twenty banks that wouldn't make a loan, claiming the plan was too “unconventional.”  But, as Judy Corbett notes in a 1999 interview with Time Magazine, “We never considered giving up.  We weren't developers, we were missionaries.” (Jackson 1999)