Businesses within cohousing communities
From: Joani Blank (
Date: Tue, 8 Oct 1996 02:35:08 -0500
Mike and others,

> how many have plans to have a fairly major enterprise that helps
sustain/grow the community, like some intentional communities do?  

>Is shared office/shop space a high priority in common house facilities?

I'm pessimistic about this, not even sure I'd want to see it in the urban
communities I'm associated with. I value serious diversity and that means
that I'm unlikely, especially in a small community of 20 or fewer
households, to be or want to be "in business" with any of my cohousing
neighbors--unless we were already in business together before we severally
moved into the community. Except, perhaps, for a person or two who might
want to have a business doing childcare for those who live in the community,
or have a property maintenance business which included doing maintenance for
the community, I personally find little attraction in putting together a
community-sustaining business of any kind. I do hope that these sorts of
communities develop however, because they surely will work for some folks,
but for me, the cohousing qualities of such a community would be incidental
to the other "intentionalities" involved.

Having a shared office for two or more people who work"at home," each doing
their own thing is a different matter entirely. I know Pioneer Valley
(Amherst, MA) has built just such a facility. It would be neat to hear how
that is working out? Do any other groups have such a facility?

Doyle St. CoHo and Old Oakland CoHo, Bay Area, CA

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