Category Archives: Our Projects

Seminar & Conference Presentations

2009  Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Seattle, WA. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

2007 Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Boston, MA. Principal Speaker and Panel Member

2005 Northeast Sustainable Energy Association Conference, Boston, MA. Speaker and Panel Member.

2005 Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Ashville, NC. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

2003 Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Boulder, CO. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

2001 Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Berkeley, CA. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

1999 Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Amherst, MA. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

1998 Northwest Regional Cohousing Conference, Seattle, WA. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

1998 APA Regional Conference, San Francisco, CA Speaker and Panel Member.

1997 Bi-Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Seattle, WA. Principal Speaker and Panel Member.

1996 Rocky Mountain Regional Cohousing Conference, Prescott, AZ. Key Note Speaker and Presenter.

1996 Pacific NW Regional Cohousing Conference, Seattle, WA. Presenter and Panel Member

1996 Developing Cohousing Communities—Keys to Success, Lafayette, CO.  Cohousing Developers. Principal Speaker & Presenter: “Patterns for Success.”

1996 Solar 96, Solar Energy Association of Oregon, Portland, OR. Presentation: “Cohousing and Sustainable Communities”

1995 Eco-Village and Sustainable Communities Conference, Findhorn, Scotland. Speaker: “Cohousing; Eco-opportunities and Economic Constraints” Panel Member: “Greening the Development Process”

1995 Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Boulder, CO. Principal Speaker : “Development Patterns and Opportunities” Panel Member: “Working with Professionals.”

1994. Annual North American Cohousing Conference, Boulder, CO. Panel Member: “Development Alternatives for Cohousing”

1993. Rocky Mountain Regional Cohousing Gathering, Boulder, CO. Presenter: “Development Options” Panel Member: “What Works and What Does Not”

1992. Northeast Regional Cohousing Gathering, Amherst, Massachusetts Principal Speaker, “The Development Process” Workshop Facilitator, “Development Issues”

Prairie Spruce Commons

Architectural Rendering Prairie Spruce Commons Cohousing

Architectural Rendering Prairie Spruce Commons Cohousing

Our current project is Prairie Spruce Commons Cohousing in Regina, Saskatchewan, the first cohousing community in Regina. The rendering above is the final design.

The Community

Part of cohousing philosophy and design is to be more ecologically sustainable. By designing smaller private units and sharing common space and amenities we can reduce, among other things, our consumption of construction materials and energy for heating and cooling. Because cohousing is resident designed, the final product typically reflects the values of the community members. It also reflects the site on which it is located.

During several workshops with the architects and consultants we defined our values and desires for our home. Our desire to maximize natural light and have access to green space is reflected in the initial schematic design. This current design includes 27 private units, with full kitchens, varying in size from small bachelor suites to 2.5 bedroom suites.  All units are flat apartment style. The shared common space for community activities currently includes – a large common kitchen and dining room, workshop, children’s playroom, media/TV room, lounge, exercise room, office, sewing/craft room, common laundry, two guest rooms, garden space and outdoor terraces.

Mission

Prairie Spruce Commons is a cohousing community committed to building an apartment-style condominium intentionally designed to use resources wisely and to encourage cooperation as well as friendly interaction among residents and neighbors, individuals and families. This inclusive, safe and authentic community is one that respects, shares & cares.

Oak Creek Commons

Entrance to Oak Creek Commons

Oak Creek Commons in Paso Robles on the Central Coast of California is a 36-home cohousing neighborhood.

We found our beautiful land in October 1999. Construction started in 2003 with most of us moving in during 2004. Our final home was completed in the summer of 2005.

We are a community that fosters enriching relationships with one another, nature and the larger community.

Our Values

The Pool at Oak Creek Commons
It is our intention to:

  • Celebrate, accept and welcome diversity,
  • Communicate with integrity, respect and trust.
  • Support, encourage and be compassionate with each other.
  • Live in loving connection while respecting personal space.
  • Create opportunities for fun, laughter, play, celebrations and rituals.
  • Contribute time and talents within our community and beyond.
  • Respect the environment by being sensitive to the interconnections between all things.

Trillium Hollow Cohousing

Trillium Hollow Cohousing Communitu

Trillium Hollow Cohousing Communitu

Trillium Hollow Cohousing began as a group of committed people at a time when there were few cohousing models available. The 12 founders of the community  borrowed against their assets and mortgaged their homes to make this dream happen. All but one was over age 60 when they took out the mortgage to buy this property.

In July of 1994, a notice was posted at the Unitarian Fellowship for folks interested in living in cohousing. That was the start.

Two years later, April 1, 1996, we closed on our new property.

From one of our founders, Joan: That evening we all went to T.H., bringing candles, wine, etc., and chairs.. We sat in a circle in the great room and grinned at each other.  I can’t quite describe it, but my eyes fill as I write it.

We held meetings and symposia to find new members. We hired a cohousing consultant and talked with architects, engineers and contractors. We went through three completely different design plans, lost our first contractor, attempted to integrate the dreams and visions of a dozen people and learned more than we ever expected about site requirements  and watershed protection.

We moved in during the summer of 1998.

Trillium Hollow Cohousing Community

Trillium Hollow Cohousing Community



From Joan: We felt like we were back in college, or summer camp, whatever, but it was one helluva honeymoon.

Today Trillium Hollow is a thriving, multigenerational community with residents ages 3 to 90+ (and every decade in-between). We work together, celebrate together, resolve conflicts with each other and sometimes we mourn together.

From Joan again: Trillium Hollow will always be made up of all of us who ever lived here.

We honor our founders each April. Without their leap of faith, their imagination and their dedication, none of us would be enjoying the remarkable benefits of this beautiful and amazing community.

Winslow Cohousing

Winslow Cohousing ExteriorWinslow Cohousing in Bainbridge, Washington includes 30 homes: 10 townhouse duplexes with 2, 3, and 4-bedroom homes; a fourplex with 1 and 2 bedroom townhouse homes; and the Carriage house with 6 flats of varied sizes. Homes range from 518 to 1500 square feet. Floor plans are similar throughout the village, and many homes have the capacity for some expansion. The duplex and fourplex homes have exclusive use areas (backyards) behind them, with all kitchens facing the walkways, courtyards, and green areas where children can play and neighbors can visit or stroll.

Environmental Concerns

Buildings are sited near each other and parking is located in one corner to preserve wooded areas and open space. Paved lanes connect all the homes, creating the pedestrian neighborhood. All construction is to strict energy-saving standards, and radiant floor heating is standard. Our refuse/recycle center and composting/worm bin projects are part of our care of the environment. Our landscaping uses drought-resistant, hardy, native species, edible by human or wildlife whenever possible. No fertilizers or toxic products are allowed on our land.

Common Spaces and FacilitiesWinslow Cohousing Interior

An integral part of the Cohousing concept is our centrally located 5,000 square foot community Common House. The Common House has dining and meeting space, a large kitchen, a recreation room for children, a fully equipped community office, a guest room, a quiet space, an exercise area, and a laundry for those who do not want laundry facilities in their homes. The orchard is flourishing near the large, sunny community garden. We also have an acre of woods, a children’s playground, a basketball area, a pottery studio, and a workshop.

WindSong Cohousing

Windsong Cohousing

WindSong Cohousing Community incorporates the best of urban and rural lifestyles. Our property is rich with indoor and outdoor beauty.

Our 34 townhomes are in two long rows facing each other across a pedestrian street. The common house is located midway between the north and south ends. Community streets are covered by a greenhouse-style glass roof enabling us to walk, talk, and play outdoors without getting wet, a significant factor in our west coast rainforest climate! Our building design encourages neighbourly interaction.

Our 5,000 sq. ft. common house includes an industrial kitchen, dining room, fireside lounge, playroom with loft and outdoor play structure, an arts & crafts room, workshop, laundry room, community office and board room, multi-purpose (exercise) room, media room, guest room, three washrooms, wheelchair ramps and an underground parking lot.

COMMUNITY DESIGN
WindSong has a balance of public and private spaces. The dwellings are privately owned and each unit is self-contained with its own entrance and private kitchen. There is ample soundproofing between units.

ENERGYBrightly painted stairs at Windsong.
Our design incorporates energy-saving elements such as clustered homes and the glass-covered pedestrian street.
Other features include low-flush toilets and environmentally friendly building materials.

OUTDOOR AREAS
WindSong has preserved 4 acres in its natural state. Yorkson Creek runs through our forest and wetland areas providing habitat for birds, beavers and fish. Our site features many native plant species. We have organic vegetable gardens, lawns, fruit trees, and play spaces for children.

WASTE AND RECYCLING
Composting bins are located in the north and south gardens. Recycling bins are located near the main garbage collection area to recycle paper, glass, cans, and some plastic. Beverage containers and batteries are collected inside for drop-off at the nearby depot.

All Projects

In addition to the list of “All Projects” and presentations below, Chris ScottHanson completed the first cohousing community in the United States:

Winslow Cohousing, Bainbridge Island, WA. 1989-1992.

  • Founded and promoted.
  • Site search and land acquisition, feasibility analysis, development facilitator, organization development, etc.
  • 30 Units – $5,500,000 budget

Projects

Prairie Spruce Commons, Regina, SK, 2013-present

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, and budgeting

Dragonfly Cohousing, Calgary, AB. 2012-2013. Not built, construction costs unaffordable.

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, and budgeting

Millstream EcoVillage, Victoria, BC. 2011

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, and budgeting

Sawyer Hill Villages, Berlin, MA. 2005-2009. Completed.

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting and complete project management through construction
  • Managing of business and development affairs of a joint venture between to LLCs forming a 3rd entity to create the project.
  • 68 Units – $24,000,000 budget

Brooklyn Cohousing, NYC, 2008-2009. Not built, no financing available.

  • Land Search, Land Acquisition Option, feasibility evaluation on several sites, project planning, budgeting, programming and schematic design. “Passive House”design and planning.
  • 30 Units – $22,000,000 budget

Jamaica Plain Cohousing, Boston, MA. 2000-2004. Completed.

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting and complete project management through design and construction
  • 30 Units – $10,200,000 budget

Duck Mill Ecovillage, Lawrence, MA. 2003-2004. Unbuilt.

  • Feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting and project management through feasibility
  • 96 Units, mixed use – $110,000,000 budget

Mosaic Commons, Stow, MA. 2000-2004. Completed. Part of Sawyer Hill Villages.

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting
  • 34 Units – $10,500,000 budget

Champlain Valley Cohousing, Charlotte, VT. 2000-2001. Completed.

  • Land acquisition, feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting, hiring professionals.
  • 28 Units – $9,000,000 budget

Oak Creek Commons, Paso Robles, CA. 1999-2000. Completed.

  • Land Acquisition, Feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting
  • 34 Units – $9,200,000 budget

Equinox Cohousing, Kirkland, WA. 1999. Not completed.

  • Site search, Feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting
  • 32 Units-$8,500,000 budget

Nippo Lake EcoVillage, Barrington, NH. 1999. Unbuilt.

  • Site search, Feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting
  • 28 Units – $7,200,000 budget

Hilltop Cohousing, San Marcos, TX. 1998-1999. Under phased development.

  • Feasibility evaluation, project planning and interim Project Manager
  • 20 Units – $4,700,000 budget

Meadows on Buckingham, Dallas, TX. 1998-1999. Completed.

  • Feasibility evaluation, project planning and interim Project Manager
  • 24 Units – $5,200,000 budget

Bellingham Cohousing, Bellingham, WA. 2000-2001. Completed.

  • Project manager responsible for all phases of project
  • 33 Units – $7,300,000 budget

Sonora Cohousing, Tucson, AZ. 1998. Completed.

  • Feasibility evaluation, project planning, budgeting
  • 36 Units – $8,800,000 budget

Trillium Hollow Cohousing, Portland, OR. 1996-1998. Completed.

  • Project Manager responsible for all phases of project through construction, including finance, budget, schedule, and professional relationships
  • 29 Units – $5,400,000 budget

Stone Curves, Tucson, AZ.1997-1998. Completed.

  • Feasibility evaluation, project planning and interim Project Manager (complete)
  • 48 Units – $10,500,000 budget

Manzanita Village, Prescott, AZ. 1996-1998. Completed.

  • Feasibility evaluation and project planning
  • 36 Units – $7,100,000 budget

Prince George EcoVillage North, Prince George, BC. 1996-1998. Unbuilt

  • Feasibility evaluation, project planning, lobbying.
  • 32 Units – C$6,500,000 budget

Emerald Place Cohousing, Delray Beach, FL. 1996. Unbuilt.

  • Budget and feasibility evaluation
  • 36 Units – $6,100,000 budget

WindSong Cohousing, Langley, BC. 1992-1996. Completed.

  • Land acquisition, budget, schedule, design team selection and management. Development Manager responsible for all phases.
  • 34 Units – C$5,600,000 budget

Comox Valley Cohousing Group, Courtenay, BC. 1995. Became Creekside Commons Cohousing Community.

  • Detailed Project Development Plan
  • 24 Units – C$3,800,000 budget

Whidbey Island Cohousing, Langley, WA. 1995. Completed.

  • 2 day workshop Jan. 6-7, 1995
  • Detailed Development Plan for existing site owned by group
  • 16 Units – $1,800,000 budget

Salem Area Cohousing Group, Salem, Oregon. 1995.

  • One-day workshop.

Portlandia Cohousing, Portland, OR. 1995. Completed.

  • Three-day workshop, additional telephone consulting

Birch Builders, Victoria, BC. 1994-1995.

  • Project Manager, group development and education

Cardiff Place, Victoria, BC. 1993-1994. Completed.

  • Land Acquisition, Project Manager, budget, schedule, change orders, etc. Facilitate relationship with private developer and architect
  • Two-day workshop Sep. 10-11, 1993

Heartland Cohousing, St. Louis, Missouri. 1993. Completed.

  • Startup workshop and follow up consulting

RoseTree Cohousing Group, Groton, MA. Completed as New View Cohousing. 1992 – 1994.

  • Startup workshop and follow up consulting.

Pioneer Valley Cohousing, Amherst, MA. 1992. Completed.

  • Startup workshop and follow up consulting

Dallas Area Cohousing Group, Carrollton. Texas. 1992.

  • Startup workshop and follow up consulting

Northwest Community Housing Foundation. Seattle, WA. 1989-1990.

  • Co-Director, Financial analysis and permit and approvals coordination for Winslow Cohousing, Bainbridge Island, Washington.
  • Site search, feasibility analysis, financial analysis, permit and approvals coordination, professional selection, and project coordination for COHO Community Association, Vashon Island, Washington
  • Various development, promotion and training responsibilities for:

Eugene Cohousing Group, Eugene, OR. Portland Cohousing Group, Portland, OR. Vashon Cohousing Group, Vashon Island, WA. Super-Insulated Solar Home on Bainbridge Island, WA. 1981-1983. Completed

  • Complete design and hands on construction

Delaware Street Commons

Delaware Street Commons in Lawrence, Kansas, is composed of a diverse group of people, including singles, couples, families and retirees of varying ages and backgrounds. The community occupies 2.2 acres in the historic section of East Lawrence, within walking distance of the Lawrence Public Transit bus line and excellent public schools.

Jamaica Plain Cohousing

Jamaica Plain Cohousing Jamaica Plain Cohousing in Boston, Massachusetts, is committed to a mixed-income multigenerational cohousing neighborhood. They are located within walking distance to public transportation and near other urban amenities, such as schools, shopping,restaurants, places of worship and cultural attractions. They built a 30-unit neighborhood designed to create a balance of community and privacy, by arranging private, self-sufficient homes around a community building or “common house” with shared resources. The community was planned, designed and is now managed by the members. They welcome tours and maintain a healthy waiting list. Contact them at www.jpcohousing.org, by phone at (617) 522-2209, or by email at [email protected]