|Why not?||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Jerry Callen (jcallenThink.COM)|
|Date: Fri, 12 Nov 93 17:10 CST|
Date: Fri, 12 Nov 93 16:53 CST From: Elise Matthesen <EMATTHESEN [at] MADMAX.MPR.ORG> Ah, Jerry Callen's comment on wanting cohousing because it was a different type of community gets at an important piece of context for me, I think, and for many of us. I guess I'm looking at the affordability issues because I already *have* the luxury of a "different community" - several of them, in fact - that feel close and supportive and unlike the distancing commonly practiced and reflected in how single-family housing is usually built. So do I. But there's no substitute for having friends right out the back (or front, or side) door. We have two small children; for a while, we were close friends with two of the four housholds immediately around us. The utility of taking the kids next door on a moment's notice so an errand can be run is NOT to be taken lightly! Likewise the fact that our kids had playmates that weren't a car ride away. Alas, they moved. In cohousing, such turnover wouldn't leave one stranded, as our neighbors' departure has. For some others, priorities differ. Sure, I want the community and am willing to work to make it happen with the right people, but if I can't afford $175,000 for a cohousing unit, but *could* afford $80,000 for an old Victorian with some like-minded people (like the ones I've been living with for 5 years or so), I know what choice I'll make. On-site expertise already lives in my house; one member is a glass etcher/craftsman and in high demand by some of those $200,000+ sites, and there are other skills around and available. A big house might just be the scale we ought to work with, though I don't know if two households can be called "co-housing". But whatever works....... I've lived in group houses, and they are TOO close for me, especially now that I have kids. In group houses, that closeness can make for serious trauma if there's any turnover. I believe that cohousing offers more stability. But, as you say, whatever works. -- Jerry Callen
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