by Brent Eades
The Millstone recently reported on Jeff Mills’ proposal to create a ‘co-housing’ project here in Almonte.
What is co-housing exactly? It’s an unusual but very appealing way of structuring a small community, and one which, it seems to me, would be a perfect fit for an already close-knit and supportive town like ours. Here’s how the Canadian Cohousing Network explains it:
Residents usually own their individual homes, which are clustered around a “common house” with shared amenities. These may include a kitchen and dining room, children’s playroom, workshops, guest rooms, home office support, arts and crafts area, laundry and more.
Each home is self-sufficient with a complete kitchen, but resident-cooked dinners are often available at the common house for those who wish to participate.
In some communities participants will join a cooking team once or twice a month — then sit and enjoy meals cooked by fellow residents the remaining evenings of that month.Cohousing residents participate in the planning, design, management and maintenance of their community, meeting frequently…
Cohousing neighbourhoods tend to offer environmentally sensitive design with a pedestrian orientation. They typically range from 10-35 households emphasizing a multi-generational mix — singles, couples, families with children, and elders.
Here is the CBC news story, which as of Sunday night was the most-viewed article on the CBC Ottawa website. It seems that co-housing is an idea whose time has come. It surely sounds appealing to me.