|Re: commonhouse design||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Jim Snyder-Grant (jimsgnewview.org)|
|Date: Wed, 22 May 2002 10:05:01 -0600 (MDT)|
Observations from New View (Acton MA) - now in our third year of the common house (6th year of living here). We built the largest space we could reasonably enclose with our budget. That meant a single floor finished for now, and an unfinished (walk-out) basement for finishing some other day. Our rooms include "a large kitchen and dining room" and "a (young) kids play area" but not "an adult media/reading room". Oh, and two HP-accessible bathrooms. We have Yoga classes once or twice a week in the dining area. It works fine. Two folks show up early, and another two stay late, to do the table & chair moving (and sweeping if needed). Consider it a yoga warm-up or cool-down. 'Crafts' -- depends on what sort. Smelly? Messy? Needs supervision or locking up? You might want to find out who is doing what sort crafts actively NOW -- the idea that you will magically take up new crafts just because you have a space for it in the common house is, I believe, a dangerous illusion to take in to the CH process. We have a kids paper & scissors & crayons table downstairs, and that's about it. We have had big succcessful craft days, where folks take over the whole dining room for a day. It takes some planning, set-up and clean-up, but they have been great fun. We get one or two grown-ups to sponsor each craft, and kids sign up. Sort of a one-day crafts-camp experience. I'm not good at remembering or estimating room sizes. Our dining area is divided a bit by some small half-height walls and some flooring and paint and ceiling changes into a few areas, so folks wanting a smaller space feeling can cluster in to one of the alcoves. One area has no dining rom tables - just comfy chairs. It often gets used for committee or small group meetings, or for kids to play games, or for reading to younger kids. We do NOT have acoustic isolation between kitchen and DR. That was a tricky decision, but it's been generally great. The cooks and cleaners stay connected to the eaters, which helps with creating cohesion and easy connection. The dishwasher only runs for a 90-second cycle, and isn't THAT loud. During Yoga, we un-plug the refrigerator (and someone puts their shoes there, so we don't forget to plug it back in!) In our circumstances, square foot costs & constraints were a lot tighter in the CH than inteh homes. So we decided early on to accept some people's word that they would be interested in having visitors stay in their extra rooms. And that has worked out well. Some are free, some charge, some are private, some are shared. But the supply seems to meet the demand. Our inside kid space is relatively small, mostly for toddlers. We also have an appropriately dank & mysterious space in the basement which is used by the teens on occaison, especially during cold months. Many many months out of the year, kids play outside. There's a small sandbox (originally left-over construction sand, now replaced by us) right outside the CH that gets a lot of year-round use as well. -Jim Jim Snyder-Grant jimsg [at] newview.org 18 Half Moon Hill Acton MA 01720 New View Cohousing http://www.newview.org ----- Original Message ----- From: <MerylD [at] aol.com> To: <cohousing-l [at] cohousing.org> Sent: Wednesday, May 22, 2002 10:12 AM Subject: [C-L]_commonhouse design Well after many years of frustration and failure, it looks like we are finally creating cohousing here in South Florida! We are working with a local developer to create a community of 32 units on 3.6 acres. We're planning to break ground within the year. We are about to embark on commonhouse design; it will be about 3,000 sq ft. An earlier effort to create cohousing here included a 4,000 sq ft commonhouse. While we can use that somewhat as a model, I am hoping to get information from people who already have a standing commonhouse as to which rooms and room sizes are most important-- and most importantly, most used. I'd love to hear suggestions from you'all about how we should design the commonhouse, room-wise, and what sizes the rooms should be. We know we want a large kitchen and dining room, a kids play area, an adult media/reading room, and bathrooms. Some of us also want to do crafts and yoga regularly, but we're unclear whether a separate room will be needed, or whether the dining room easily doubles for those (perhaps with folding doors to make the larger room smaller?)? And are guest rooms an efficient use of space, or are we better off just having a Murphy bed in the media room? Also, how large should the kids' play area be? Thanks for any input! Regards, Meryl _______________________________________________ Cohousing-L mailing list Cohousing-L [at] cohousing.org Unsubscribe and other info: http://www.communityforum.net/mailman/listinfo/cohousing-l _______________________________________________ Cohousing-L mailing list Cohousing-L [at] cohousing.org Unsubscribe and other info: http://www.communityforum.net/mailman/listinfo/cohousing-l
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