Re: architects and developers
From: Karin Landsberg (
Date: Mon, 17 Nov 2003 13:00:13 -0700 (MST)

I appreciate all the feedback from my questions. Here's a bit more information:

Dearborn Commons Cohousing is in Seattle. We had an option on a site, however it has expired (long complicated mess involving a developer that wanted out of the project). The city intends to issue an RFP for both "our" site and a larger parcel across the street on December 1st. Proposals will be due January 15.

We have preliminary plans for an 18 unit building on the site. Condo style building, underground parking, with the common house and a wheel chair accessible unit also on the ground level, then two floors of units above as two towers with a common terrace in between. The units are studio, one, and two bedrooms.

We are working with a local non-profit land trust to make five of the units permanently affordable.

So far, there is one developer locally who focuses on non-traditional community based type projects that seems to be interested in working with us on our site and the site across the street. We have received proposals from two local architects.

We have a pretty good chance of being awarded the option, we know the city likes our project because of the density, low-income, and community aspects. We have already been through a favorable neighborhood review process, and there is another cohousing community (Jackson Place) across the street from our site which supports us as well.

So my original questions were: We are getting ready to hire an architect and developer. What worked for your group and what would you do differently? Any input would be helpful! Also, I am particularly curious to find out the reasons groups have chosen to go with local architects and developers or ones who are more familiar with the particulars of creating cohousing.

Again, thanks to everyone for your input!! Karin Landsberg

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