Littleton Columbine
From: allenbutcher (allenbutcherjuno.com)
Date: Fri, 23 Jul 1999 11:53:52 -0500
Correction: Greyrock Commons is in Fort Collins, about 75 miles from
Columbine High School.  The cohousing community in Littleton is Highline
Crossing which is 6 3/4 miles by car from Columbine HS (there are two
high schools closer to the community so it is unlikely that any Highline
teenagers attended Columbine).  In addition, Harmony Village is a
cohousing community in Golden, about 19 miles from Columbine HS by
bee-line, plus there are two more cohousing communities planned in the
City of Denver at about the same distance, 19 miles.


I might also add, as an observer of Highline Crossing, not a resident,
that Highline from the beginning has had a distinctively different
experience than most other cohousing communities (those with a better
understanding of Highline may want to add or detract from my assessment).
 Highline:  40 units, 3.6 acres, completed 7/97, contact:  Jeff Browne 
303-347-8351.


>From the beginning, Highline's experience in Littleton was a long and
difficult sell.  The entire community was not completed for years as it
took a long time to find enough people to invest and move into the
community.  Evidently the location in Littleton turned away some people,
plus the cost was high.  Littleton is essentially an affluent suburban
culture, and it is a testament to the resolve of the founders of the
community that they kept it going.  It's amenities include an overlook
upon a reservoir, and an excellent running/bike path along the Highline
Canal (with water flowing during rainy seasons) immediately adjacent to
the community, which goes some 20 miles and connects to other
running/bike paths around the metropolitan area.  There is also a small
park adjacent to the community, providing some open space.  Immediately
on the other side of that small park begins condominium developments. 
Strip malls are a little down the road.


I have also heard it said that there is not as much "community
mindedness" at Highline Crossing as is often found in other cohousing
communities.  A significant portion of the community, evidently more than
in most cohousing communities, do not participate in community functions.
 I don't know the statistics on meals in the common house, but they are
relatively infrequent (hows that for avoiding specifics?).  So the point
is that the 
"dominant attributes of our 'society' - individualism, materialism,
consumerism, obsession with privacy etc.," as Graham Meltzer put it, has
influenced the Highline Cohousing community at least as much or more than
 Highline has influenced the surrounding culture (through newspaper
articles, tours, presentations, word of mouth, etc.)  


Yet it is commendable that a group of people have bravely built an
outpost for community in the cultural wasteland of suburban Littleton,
Colorado.


Allen


On Fri, 23 Jul 1999 10:40:08 -0500 cohousing-l [at] freedom.mtn.org writes:
>"it was a place
>where tracts of new houses had been put down on the edge of a prairie 
>and then occupied by people who had come from somewhere else and knew 
>nothing about either the prairie or the people who lived next to them.  
>Children rarely played outside on the street ... there was no pool, no
ice 
>rink, no town square in the area around Columbine".  Ayres goes on to
suggest 
>that Littleton had no LIFE - "no shared experience of the kind that
makes
>neighbours and friends and communities".  He ends the article by 
>noting the
>presence in Littleton of a cohousing community (Greyrock Commons) and 
>"how different a version of Littleton this must be from the one where
Eric 
>Harris and Dylan Klebold lived".
>
>Best wishes to my friends in the US.  
>
>Graham Meltzer
>
>Lecturer (Architectural Design and Social Ecology)
>School of Architecture, Interior and Industrial Design
>Queensland University of Technology, 
>GPO Box 2434, Brisbane, Australia 4001.
>
>Tel:(617)38642535(w)  Fax:(617)38641528
>
>Web site about cohousing research and education:
>   http://www.aiid.bee.qut.edu.au/~meltzer/  
>
>
>------------------------------

A. Allen Butcher, Fourth World Services
Providing information for a lifestyle balancing our personal needs 
with those of society and nature.
PO Box 1666, Denver, CO  80201-1666
allenbutcher [at] juno.com     phone: 303-355-4501    fax: 303-388-0602
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