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Baked-potato bar, story circles, core group updates & more

Registration is now open for the next TCCN evening meal + program that will be occurring March 30th.

Cohousing is more than a form of housing. It’s about people committing to being mutually supportive within a cohousing community. Learn more at the next meal + program. Sign up for the March 30th event here.

Twin Cities Cohousing Network offers these meal + program events to give you a hint of what it might be like to live in cohousing. Meet others interested in the cohousing concept. Build shared history with folks who could become your future cohousing neighbors.

Thursday, March 30, 2017. Doors open for setup at 5:30 pm. Dinner starts at 6 pm.

Further details about the evening’s schedule, with the registration and payment forms, are at this link.

 

Community + Privacy = Cohousing

Can we disrupt the isolation of modern life with a newer form? The word “cohousing” is translated from the Danish, where these clustered, intentional mini-communities are fairly common (and in fact are encouraged by government policies in Denmark).

What defines cohousing? There are some aspects that are bricks-and-mortar: each household owns its own private home–sometimes a detached house, more often a townhome or condo unit–and a share in the yard/gardens as well as a building for optional group meals and other activities, the “common house”.

It is the social aspects that disrupt our society’s typical way of life. People who live in cohousing do so with a commitment to building community among their neighbors, sharing some equipment (such as lawnmowers and snowblowers) that gets used infrequently, and helping each other.

Save the date: Thurs., Mar. 30 in the evening

For the next Twin Cities Cohousing Network gathering, our star kitchen crew will cook another group meal, cohousing style. Our meal will again be followed by an update from the local cohousing core groups, other announcements, and then a story circle session at each table.

Details and registration will be available soon. Please check back, and sign up for the monthly TCCN News e-newsletter to be informed about this and other events.

 

Housing density and housing-unit cost

How Much Land is Needed to Develop a Cohousing Community?

by Lynn Englund

When I first became interested in cohousing, one of the questions I had was: how much land would a cohousing group need to purchase in order to develop their community? I’ve learned that it depends on several factors, including the values and lifestyle that a cohousing community desires, the amount of money the group can pull together, and the zoning regulations of the municipality.

For example, a community that values extensive green space and gardens probably will seek more land than a community that values living Continue reading “Housing density and housing-unit cost”

Getting It Built workshop offered by Chuck Durrett, et. al.

When and how does a core group start figuring out the location of their future community?

A fast-track local group is forming to bring experienced cohousing architect Chuck Durrett and his associates to the Twin Cities for an intensive weekend-long “Getting It Built” workshop.

Anyone who is interested in being involved in creating a cohousing community sooner rather than later is encouraged to express interest by emailing the address below. Details will be provided to you. The goal of the workshop: to vet and explore the possibilities of a particular site for a cohousing community. Tentative dates for the workshop are Mar. 4-5, 2017.

If you are interested, you MUST email John Kalmon john@jpkalmon.com to get all the details and receive updates. Include your name, phone number and comments/questions.

The information you provide to John will only be shared with Durrett, The Cohousing Company associates, and the other individuals who sign up.

Please share this information with others who might be interested in the workshop.

Next community meal + program | Feb. 2nd

For the next Twin Cities Cohousing Network gathering, our star kitchen crew will cook another group meal, cohousing style. Our meal will again be followed by an update from the local cohousing core groups, other announcements, and then a story circle session at each table.

For details and to register, click here.

Please note that registration and payment in advance is strongly encouraged so that the cooks know their budget and how many to plan for. Cost covers food and a share of the room rental. There is a maximum charge for families to make it easier to bring your children.

Also, if you’d possibly like to join the cooks for chopping, baking, and other kitchen tasks, and are able to arrive around 4 pm, please contact Becca to get the details.

ecbrackett [at] cohousing [dot] org

Community meal + program Dec. 1st | we cook for you

For the next Twin Cities Cohousing Network gathering, our star kitchen crew has cooked up a menu for a group meal, cohousing style.

For details and to register, click here.

Please note that payment in advance is strongly encouraged so that the cooks know their budget and how many to plan for. Cost covers food and a share of the room rental. There is a maximum charge for families to make it easier to bring your children.

Also, the cooks could use one or two more people who enjoy chopping vegetables, baking, and other kitchen tasks, and are able to arrive around 4 pm. If that sounds fun and you’re available to help, please contact Becca to get the details.

ecbrackett [at] cohousing [dot] org

people in a large room listen to a speaker
At the Oct 20th cohousing potluck. Photo: Lynn Englund

Potluck next step after the Durrett talk

by John Kalmon

We had a great turnout for the presentation on cohousing by Charles Durrett, who took us through a verbal tour of many cohousing communities, accompanied by great photos and punctuated with stories that were engaging and enlightening. He described how cohousing improves peoples’ lives by bringing a new level of social connection into their day-to-day activities.

As an example, Durrett recalled an elderly woman who moved from the home closest to the parking area to the furthest away because it improved her relationship with her neighbors, which she described as more important than her relationship with her car.

The idea of resource sharing was explained—not only lawn mowers and common-house amenities, but more importantly the opportunity to share one’s time, knowledge or emotional support. All this can and does happen easily because of the arrangement and design of the structures, and because the people who have chosen to live in cohousing recognize that their social well-being and connections are among their highest priorities.

durrett_talk_lynns_photo_fb_sept2016_even_smaller

Durrett spoke of “social tax” as well, the work a community needs to put in to assure long-term success. This needs to be addressed early in the formation of a core group by establishing their goals and values, and learning how to make decisions as a group, often by some form of consensus. Stories of specific challenges faced by groups and how they overcame them were very informative.

The audience asked good questions. Stimulating conversation continued among attendees long after the presentation, and many pitched in without hesitation to stack the chairs!

To learn more about what is happening locally in cohousing, please continue to check our website and sign up to receive TCCN News, our e-newsletter, which will bring you all the latest news and events. We hope to see you at our next event on October 20th.

Cohousing community potluck dinner: the next steps

Join us!

Individuals, couples and families interested in further exploring cohousing in the greater Twin Cities (MN) area are invited to a potluck dinner and program designed to get to know one another, and to deepen the conversation about community and how we might envision the cohousing place where we’d each feel comfortable and happy. Register here.

Core Groups

At least one person from each of the core groups will be there so that you will have an opportunity to talk with them.

TCCN has rented the fellowship hall at St Frances Cabrini Church in the Southeast neighborhood of Minneapolis. Please bring an item for the potluck, along with an ingredient list. Admission to this followup event will be by donation at the door to cover hall rental, photocopying, and other expenses. Suggested: $5 TCCN members; $10 non-members.

RSVP

If you know you plan to attend, please RSVP so we can have some idea of how many to expect, but don’t let that stop you if you decide at the last minute to show up. See you there!

st_francis_cabrini_church_image

St Frances Cabrini Church, 1500 Franklin Ave SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

Architect Durrett draws 130 people interested in cohousing

With a stormy night predicted, TCCN volunteers worried that the severe weather might keep away some of the 70+ people who had pre-registered for the Charles Durrett event. The concerns were unfounded. Almost double that number showed up!

durrett_talk_lynns_photo_fb_sept2016_even_smaller

 

Two books that Durrett has written were available at the event and sold quickly: Creating Cohousing as well as Senior Cohousing. Local bookstores where these can be found are: Magers & Quinn, Present Moment, the University of Minnesota Bookstore, and Common Good Books. Please patronize your local independent bookstore.

Thank you to everyone who attended, and we look forward to seeing you at upcoming events.

TCCN is grateful for the support of the Social Justice Committee of the First Unitarian Society of Minneapolis for co-sponsoring and helping us to publicize this opportunity.