RE: Private? Public? or something in between?
From: Lashbrook, Stephan (
Date: Tue, 5 Jun 2001 11:00:02 -0600 (MDT)
Good points, Rob.
I am reminded of my visits to Village Homes in Davis, California (not a
cohousing development, but still an important model for a number of
reasons).  When you walk through Village Homes, you will be greeted by
residents who ask -- politely, from my experience -- who you are and why you
are there.  
It serves two purposes:  security for Village Homes and communication with
people from outside the neighborhood.  It made me want to live there, or
somewhere else where the residents felt so much pride and protectiveness
toward their neighborhood.  And it works without gates.

-----Original Message-----
From: Rob Sandelin [mailto:floriferous [at]]
Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2001 10:06 AM
To: cohousing-l [at]
Subject: RE: [C-L]_Private? Public? or something in between?

At Sharingwood we put up a small handpainted wooden sign one year at our
entrance which read something like: Private  development, pedestrians
welcome, please leash your dogs.
This turned back those people whose dogs were causing a problem, did not
deter the other folks that walk through our neighborhood. We have on
occasion had problems with  kids from up the road using our play set and
woods without being invited. Unaccompanied and uninvited children are not
allowed in our neighborhood, mostly for insurance and safety reasons but
also because of some history of kids acting in ways parents here did not
like. In all cases, a conversation with the parents solved the problems. I
personally have learned many good things about the local politics and events
from our walk through neighbors and I personally really like knowing the
neighbors up the road on a first name basis.
Rob Sandelin

-----Original Message-----
From: cohousing-l-admin [at]
[mailto:cohousing-l-admin [at]]On Behalf Of Cohouser1 [at]
Sent: Monday, June 04, 2001 7:09 AM
To: cohousing-l [at]
Cc: Solterran [at]; AudLambert [at]
Subject: [C-L]_Private? Public? or something in between?

Hi everyone: 
Solterra is a community of 40 lots on 20 acres.  About 1/2 of the lots are 
now occupied and we are going to complete our common house around the end of

the year.  We completed our system of paths a few months ago providing
to our common lands, our common house and all our houses without going on
roads.  Many of our houses are located within several feet of a path. 

Our paths have proven attractive to our surrounding neighborhood, and kids
bikes, people walking dogs, and strollers are a common sight.  Not hordes of

people, but enough to cause serious concern on the part of some of our 
members when bikes are driven too fast, etc. 

This has revealed a fundamental difference or opinion in our community.
feel we should welcome "the neighborhood" to use our paths and get to know 
us, and we them.  Many feel that we accepted smaller lots because we own a 
share of our common land, and the paths should be ours to use, not the 
general public.  Others would like to wait and see if it becomes a serious 
problem before taking action, such as putting up "private" signs. 

This issue must have been addressed by several other communities, and we 
would like to hear from you. 

- What do you do about access by neighbors? 
- Has it been beneficial? 
- Do you encourage or discourage it? 
- Have you had any problems? 
- Have you put up signs? 
- How were they worded? 
- What has worked for you? 

Your comments would be very much appreciated. 

Gordon Lambert 
Solterra Cohousing, Durham, NC 

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