Misuse of the cohousing word - again
From: Becca Brackett (ecbrackettcohousing.org)
Date: Thu, 6 Dec 2018 16:12:28 -0800 (PST)
I decided to write to Emilie Raguso of the Berkeleyside news about an article she wrote Dec 4, 2018. It is about a proposed very dense housing building to  replace a gas station. It is NOT cohousing but the word co-housing is used.  The building is to have 80 bedrooms in 23 units, and a few small common areas - Not a community.

the headline reads:  Council approves South Berkeley co-housing units after zoning board denial.

here is the article:


Here is what I wrote to her:

Dear Emilie Raguso,

I am from Minneapolis,  but I just had to comment about the use of the word  "co-housing"  in your article. I have a "google alert" on the word cohousing and that service brought your article to my attention. It appears from the article that what  is planned is Co-living. The units available individually, without any intentional community organization, and later in your article  you do use "Co-living"  which I think is a more appropriate word choice. Even though  you used a dash for co-housing,  I am hoping that you will not use it in future for such a building.

I am a big fan of the concept ( cohousing )  brought to the USA from Denmark in the 1990's, AND hate to see it confused with other types of housing developments. The wikipedia article on cohousing  ( no hyphen included) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cohousing, defines  cohousing as a  " an__intentional community <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intentional_community>__ of private homes clustered around shared space. Each attached or single family home has traditional amenities, including a private kitchen. Shared spaces typically feature a common house, which may include a large kitchen and dining area, laundry, and recreational spaces. Shared outdoor space may include parking, walkways, open space, and gardens. Neighbors also share resources like tools and lawnmowers. Households have independent incomes and private lives, but neighbors collaboratively plan and manage community activities and shared spaces. The legal structure is typically a homeowner association <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeowner_association> or housing cooperative <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Housing_cooperative>. "

Berkeley DOES have some actual cohousing - "Berkeley Cohousing" is its name and their webpage is _https://www.cohousing.org/Berkeley%20Cohousing. _Cohousing groups form BEFORE  construction and as a group contribute to the planning and Architectural choices. After construction they self manage their community._

Thanks  for considering this issue,

Becca Brackett--

Becca Brackett: Bassett Creek Cohousing member,
http://BassettCreek.us      612-588-9532
I am a retired MD, Unitarian Humanist!
I am quilter, gardener, and naturalist.

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