Re: off-site members
From: Fremantle LETS (
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 1996 20:20:43 -0600
At 03:50 PM 13/12/96 -0600, you wrote:
>Do any cohousing communities have non-resident members? 

Hi Janine and friends,

Pinakarri Community Inc is a soon to be built ( starts in Feb,'97 - 8
non-equity, low income houses and 4 equity houses and a common house funded
from the non-equity budget ) urban, cohousing project.

Not all of our members will live on site.  Some members were to be housed
but as circumstances changed for them, some moving to the country, they
remain members of the community. Some are interested in living nearby.  One
couple has just purchased a next door property, the husband doesn't want to
be as closely involved in 'community' as his wife.

This is a work in progress and seems to depend a little on what the person
wants from the continued connection. Long distance members pay a nominal
'supportive' fee, receive minutes, come to meetings and community dinners
(held once a week in individuals' homes) when they're in town, share their
viewpoints at meetings but cannot block concensus on issues pertaining to
the housing in the decision making process. 

Each of these people has received support from the group separate to
personal friendships within the group. e.g. practical and ongoing emotional
support around the death of an unborn baby and house swapping. One member
has a profoundly and severely physically and intellectually disabled
daughter, Debbie, who will be housed with a carer at the co-op although the
father will remain living in the country. We expect that he will visit
regularly and may stay at the common house.

Close-by membership is a bit grey. Still seems to depend on what they want
to get out of the connection. Seems to centre on support, a dodgey issue in
itself.  Numbers of people are interested in moving to our area because of
our community.  In theory they may share access to the common house, their
input is unclear as yet. The concern here is the limited size of the common
space and the impact on the on-site residents.

As I said, a work in progress.

Why do we do this?  Pinakarri is an intentional community first and then a
cohousing project.

Hope this helps.  I'm very interested in the subject and look forward to

Warmest regards
Robyn Williams
Pinakarri Community
Western Australia   

Our architect is about to present the detailed drawings ready to go to
building tender in late January.  

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