Re: Very Quick Question
From: Donna Freiermuth (editorcohousing.org)
Date: Mon, 25 Aug 2008 12:40:28 -0700 (PDT)
It's always wonderful to see ideas for better collection of cohousing data that could be centrally located and more accessible.

Coho/U.S. created a new section of its website called the Members Area which we hope will serve as a place for in-depth discussions and a repository for this type of information. All that section needs now is more involvement from the folks who know so much about cohousing -- which is you -- lots of the people who read and write to Coho-L. If you have any interest in seeing a resource like this grow and thrive, please consider becoming a cohost of one of the planned (or an unplanned) topic room. Your interest is what matters.

For more information about the Members Area see: http://www.cohousing.org/ma/overview

Please email me if you have questions about what would be involved. I'd love to talk to you about it.

In community,
donna

Editor
/Cohousing Magazine /


From: Kay Argyle (kay.argyleutah.edu)
Date: Mon, 25 Aug 2008 10:23:34 -0700 (PDT)

Physical structure and legal status tend to be stable once a community is finished, compared to dynamic statistics like population, which fluctuates - at least, in some communities, per a recent discussion :). It strikes me that this is, thus, one of those questions that it makes sense to collect the answers in a central repository, in the cohousing wiki or someplace, that forming groups could easily be referred to, to avoid the fatigue of "I've already answered that question three times ..." from long-time cohousing-L members, or the difficulty of tracking down somebody, somewhere, who somebody dimly remembers collected information from a
previous thread and may or may not still have it on their computer.

The Cohousing Association's directory has number of units and property size, which (with their permission) would provide a start on such a table, with Diane Simpson's and Tom Hammer's tables filling in a few more facts on a few communities. Even if, to start with, much of the information was blank on most communities, whatever was there would be useful.

Include a form linked to the webpage, so that communities could submit their information to be added.

Some of the FAQs that (from ten years' observation of cohousing-L) occur to me for inclusion:

- name
- location
- # of units
- size of common house
- property size
- mix of unit sizes: studio/1br/2br/3br/4br, and/or range of square footages

- # of fully/partially handicap-accessible units and/or common house
- # of low-income units, or other affordability measures
- # of guest rooms
- dining room capacity
- checkoff columns for common (in the sense of "frequently existing")
amenities such as a common laundry, workshop, bike shed, community garden
- condo or lot development
- new-built or retrofit
- type of incorporation such as condo, co-op, etc.
- zoning (e.g., farm animals allowed?)
- special features like geothermal heat, alternative construction methods,
conservation easements, on-site businesses, or any focus such as elder
housing or religious affiliation

Kay



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