Re: Coho Community - when no Coho "Community"?
From: Russell Mawby (
Date: Fri, 4 Jul 1997 10:02:29 -0500
George, I have to challenge your assumption that there is "real" cohousing
and some other pseudo ways of building community that just don't quite stack up.

The folks from N-Street (Donna Spreitzer in Toronto too) could shed more
light on what's *real* in this whole cohousing thing, but I will focus on
the prevailing paradigm that development, especially new development, is
good, everything else is second rate.

I have commented before that I am somewhat discouraged by the ads I see in
the Cohousing Journal for expensive new developments that may very well
offer a great community setting, but to me are just about real estate.
Community *is* all the touchy feely things you are thinking about doing -
getting together with neighbours, perhaps sharing a vacation spot, hell,
just saying hello in the morning.  

It is *not* real estate development, and all the endless meetings it takes
to get there.  Or rather, the actual meetings themselves can be a way of
building community, but hey, we can get together to meet about anything, not
just developing some land.

I think we develop new cohousing because of the lack of physical place that
most of our cities (and lives) suffer from, because we've decided that
investment value and curb appeal are more important in the houses we build
than whether or not they're part of a *real* community.

But many of us refuse to accept that this is the only way, or even the best
way.  To me, it is a poor second choice, when often the community we are
looking for is right under our noses.

Russell Mawby                   Ph : (306) 975-7666
Housing Facilitator             Fax: (306) 975-7712
City of Saskatoon
Planning and Building Dept.             
222 - 3rd Avenue North                  
Saskatoon, SK  S7K 0J5          russ.mawby [at]

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