Site prep / remediation funding
From: Fred-List manager (
Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2018 10:36:29 -0700 (PDT)
Mary Ellen Meyer <meyer [at]>
is the author of the message below.  It was posted by
Fred, the Cohousing-L list manager <fholson [at]>

Mary Ellen is currently not subscribed to cohousing-L so
please send a copy or replies to this thread to her direct.

--------------------  FORWARDED MESSAGE FOLLOWS --------------------


We have been working on the development and building of what will be the
first Cohousing community in Indiana for 7 years now.  This is located
on brownfield that has been reclaimed and brought to residential use. 
We have three homes finished and inhabited, two more almost complete,
and sixth about to be excavated.  This is a small neighborhood of 14
units plus the Common House with all but two lots spoken for.  We are
situated along a race diverted from the Elkhart River years ago as a
power source, no longer used for that.  In excavating for one of the
lots along the race we discovered that four of those lots are on varying
degrees of unstable soil caused by fill that was put in long ago that
included cinders that don't absorb water and can't be compacted. This
means that we need to use some helical piers and reinforced foundations
in order to build the houses designed for those lots. This includes the
Common House.  This sort of building is not unusual for lakeside lots,
for example, but is quite expensive.

It goes without saying that our individual owners do not have the
resources to pay this additional amount before the cost of their own
houses.  The city is going to help us with %50, but that leaves about
$150,000-$200,000 for us to contribute to get the job done for the four
lots.  I'm looking for possible funding sources--grants or gifts--that
might help us reach that amount.  I thought there might be agencies or
philanthropists that were committed either to the developing of
cohousing communities in the Midwest, of which there are few compared to
the coasts, or to the idea of reclaiming land that was previously
industrial located close to city centers that can be converted to
residential use. More people are looking for housing that is walkable to
downtown and other amenities, and ours is a prime location for that.

Do you have any ideas?
If we could find a committed donor, we could name our Common House for

Thanks for any help or encouragement,

Mary Ellen Meyer

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