Re: participation in decision making
From: Ann Zabaldo (
Date: Wed, 7 Jan 2015 06:54:50 -0800 (PST)
Hi Liz and all —

Design of the buildings, while important, is only one part of the cohousing 
experience.  Design of how to live in your community is FAR more complicated 
and requires far more attention than bricks and mortar (which still requires a 
lot.)  My own experience building and living in cohousing is that we pay too 
much attention to buildings and not nearly enough to relationship building.  As 
new folks come into the community … a new design and pattern of living evolves. 
 Intentionally paying attention to the evolution of the community goes a long 
way in smoothing out the bumps and swales.

On Jan 6, 2015, at 8:30 PM, Liz Ryan Cole <lizryancole [at]> wrote:

> On Jan 6, 2015, at 8:20 PM, Jerry McIntire wrote:
> Many cohousers though want to be part of
> the planning and decision-making. That basic participation is one of the
> six key characteristics of a cohousing community.
> I am wondering how existing communities deal with bringing in new people who 
> can't possibly participate in decision making design of an already built 
> community.  Isn't the important participation in the life of the community?  
> thanks  liz
> Liz Ryan Cole
> lizryancole [at]
> Pinnacle Cohousing at Loch Lyme Lodge
> Lyme, NH

Best --

Ann Zabaldo
Takoma Village Cohousing
Washington, DC
Principal, Cohousing Collaborative, LLC
Falls Church VA

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