|Re: COHOUSING AND ZONING||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: rc3-coho-L (rc3-coho-Lraines.com)|
|Date: Tue, 13 Nov 2007 11:58:50 -0800 (PST)|
Joani wrote: > I have heard about a community somewhere in the U.S. (but never seen > a site plan, so it may be just a fantasy) that dealt with a large > minimum lot sizes by dividing their site into very tiny slivers of a > pie and putting all the houses at the points and, I think, the > common house right in the middle.....or something like that. Is this > just a figment of my imagination or does it really exist? I have been there. It is Forty Oaks Cohousing, in Petaluma, CA (in Sonoma county in the Northern San Francisco Bay Area, quite near Frog Song in Cotati, as the bird flies), which has been on and off of the cohousing communities list because of some differences from the conventional model. (there may be other communities designed this way as well.. I certainly have seen some non-cohousing intentional communities that use this model or similar "clustered nodes" plus a Common House-type structure: Shannon Farm in Virginia comes to mind, and I just spent the weekend at the 30-year-old Monan's Rill near Santa Rosa, CA, which has a similar configuration). Here's a Google Maps view: http://tinyurl.com/ynjvuh A county planner suggested the configuration, according to a community member: a 10 acre lot with 2 acres per home minimum lot sizes, if I recall, so they put the houses at the points of pie-wedge-shaped lots, creating a belt of greenspace around with the units clustered. The community has been featured on cohousing tours organized by local sustainability-education group Daily Acts, with the resident architect Claudia Weaver participating. Some very green/natural (Rastra and similar materials) construction is involved. tour description: http://www.daily-acts.org/tours.html#_14 There is no Common House (yet... that's why sometimes they don't get counted as cohousing, despite the intent and layout and facilities and naming), but there is a common barn and common lake and the units were built with large kitchens that could accomodate large groups dining together on a regular basis. Plus each unit gets to have an "in-law" detached smaller cottage that can then be rented out as an effectively independent unit (like the downstairs rooms with independent entrances at Nyland Cohousing in Colorado and Jackson Place in Seattle). Plus, since the definition of a unit is a kitchen and the definition of a kitchen is a stove, they created large units that have essentially two households with two independent kitchens linked by a single shared stove. I was very impressed with the creativity that lets them be legal and get all the advantages of working in the system (financing, approval) yet acheiving their goals, getting enough families onboard to be able to afford the project, and make it sustainable, preserve open space, etc. Raines Cohen, Cohousing Coach Planning for Sustainable Communities at Berkeley (CA) Cohousing Regional Organizer, Northern California Cohousing http://www.norcalcoho.org/ Thanking everyone who helped at our Green Festival booth last weekend, and inviting all to our Communities Convergence and workshops this weekend in Berkeley, featuring "Creating a Life Together" and "Finding Community" author Diana Leafe Christian recovering from major email disruption, so please excuse my recent absence here.
- Re: COHOUSING AND ZONING, (continued)
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