Re: Households Sponsoring Outside Groups in the Commonhouse
From: Elizabeth Stevenson (
Date: Mon, 11 Jun 2001 14:21:03 -0600 (MDT)

> Like many, the CH seems under-utilized.
 >Judy Baxter

I've been thinking about this, and I think that common houses are not as
underutilized as they seem. Laundry, mail, meals and other things happen
every day, and sometimes the CH is sparsely enough used that we don't see
each other, even though we go in there every day. Most people could say
their own homes are underutilized during the day, too.

There is also the knowledge that it is there. Psychically, it is important
to have, therefore it is being used even when empty, for community, for
peace of mind, as a center of the collective spirit of the group.

If you think of the McMansions many cohousers could afford and the amount of
unused space they could have, the CH seems an exceptionally good use of
space. Just putting a laundry room in each unit instead of having a common
house would be enough to take up all the room we allocated to the CH.

This summer, I will be washing clothes for the local school district's
Clothes Closet that distributes free clothes to school children. It's a
great use of the extra machines available to me.

Empty, sometimes, but not underutilized.

Liz Stevenson
Southside Park Cohousing
Sacramento, California

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