Re: Need information on Common House use
From: fergyb2 (
Date: Wed, 26 Aug 2020 13:16:09 -0700 (PDT)
   Pre Covid-19 our Common House was used daily.  We held common dinners 3 
times a week.  Several people used the space to work on Ph.D and volunteer 
projects during weekdays because they could spread out their materials on the 
large tables and for companionship.  Our HOA meetings and committee meetings 
(Of which there are many) were held  in the Common  House before we had to 
switch to zoom.  Community celebrations such as birthday parties, 
anniversaries, graduation parties, baby showers, wedding rehearsal dinners, 
music concerts, memorials, political meetings such as the league of women 
voters and candidate speaking nights, business meetings such as the small 
business association and various work groups, census leader meetings, etc. 
Christmas cookie decorating, pumpkin carving Halloween parties, New Years Tea 
(an annual tradition), community Thanksgiving potluck, Fourth of July party, 
cooking projects such as large scale cookie making or canning, Board Game 
potluck events.  Large puzzles put together over multiple days/nights, MahJong, 
CORE trainings (CORE stands for Communities of Oakland Respond to Emergencies 
the local version of CERT), annual Earthquake preparedness exercise, monthly 
massage day when a masseuse comes in and sets up in our common space and 
members can sign up to get a massage for cheaper than usual rates, and of 
course there is our well used laundry room, exercise room, guest bedroom for 
when family or friends come to visit, and Our workshop where numerous craft and 
work projects are conducted, also coffee roasting.        This doesn’t even 
count the daily use of the kids room which might not be relevant to your 
Hope this helps.  Best of luck.
   Bonnie Fergusson
Swans Market Cohousing
Oakland, CA

Sent from my iPad

> On Aug 26, 2020, at 7:21 AM, Barbara Smith via Cohousing-L <cohousing-l [at] 
>> wrote:
> I am with Middlesex Senior Co-housing, which hopes to build the region's 
> first senior co-housing development on property we've optioned in Littleton, 
> MA. Our plans are before the Littleton Planning Board and among their 
> questions is: why do we need a common house? (I know -- this does not 
> strictly relate to the zoning bylaw, but we're trying to reassure them in as 
> many ways as possible.) One member maintains that a Common House is "never 
> used". Before the next Planning Board meeting (in a few weeks) I want to 
> present results of a short survey of  co-housing communities' use of their 
> common house. Could anyone out there please help us out by answering a few 
> questions?
> 1. How often is your common house used -- on a daily, weekly or monthly basis?
> 2. For what purposes do people use your common house? (As many uses as 
> possible!)
> Many thanks from all of us in Middlesex Senior Cohousing!Barbara B Smith 
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