From: Norm Gauss (
Date: Tue, 27 Jul 2004 15:56:42 -0700 (PDT)
In our situation, we needed a landscape architect to draw a scale layout of
the community (situated on a ridge top), showing the exact location of the
new condominium buildings, lots, common house, plaza, driveways, walkways,
concrete stairways, swimming pool area, vegetable garden, orchard,
irrigation lines and overflow parking areas, as well as a list of trees,
shrubs, and groundcover plants (and their exact location), and lawn areas.
This plan had to be drawn according to industry standards and submitted to
the planning commission, along with specifications on temporary soil erosion
measures, pre-emergent herbicides, mulching material, a timed irrigation
system (both sprinkler and drip), and measures to ensure that the plants get
established.  Once all this was approved, it had to be submitted to the site
engineering firm so that water supply lines could be planned, along with the
other underground utilities (all utilities are underground).  This was way
beyond the scope of a do-it-yourself team.

There were certain changes requested by our landscape committee, primarily
in the types of plants and their location, but we accepted most of the other
work of the landscape architect.

Norm Gauss
Oak Creek Commons
Paso Robles, CA

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Sharon Villines" <sharon [at]>
To: "Developing cohousing - collaborative housing communities"
<cohousing-l [at]>
Sent: Tuesday, July 27, 2004 10:21 AM

> On Jul 27, 2004, at 11:32 AM, Eris Weaver wrote:
> > There's plenty to do in
> > the formative stage, with developing process and connections with each
> > other, as well as the mundane physical design elements. We did do some
> > things ourselves -- we designed and installed much of the landscaping
> > ourselves, for example.
> People do forget this. There will plenty to do even if you hire
> EVERYTHING done by professionals. It is a lot of work and hiring out
> the big things allows you to focus on stuff like landscaping that you
> can do much better and with more love than any landscaper a developer
> could hire.
> Put your energy where you can make a difference. Get moved in, with a
> commonhouse.
> Sharon
> -----
> Sharon Villines
> Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC
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