CoHousing Solutions Newsletter | October 2018

Here's a quick look at this month's newsletter...
  • Katie leads Kick Off Workshop, new members join Skagit Cohousing
  • Spokane Cohousing hires developer, growing community fast
  • How Cohousing fosters political engagement
  • Cohousing Association updates (free WebChat Series & deadline for conference proposals extended)
  • Multiple Info Sessions with groups around the country (find one near you!)


- Katie & Bethany, The CoHousing Solutions Team
Katie McCamant Leads a Successful Workshop with Skagit Cohousing
On September 29-30, Skagit Cohousing officially kicked off their project with a Weekend Workshop, led by Katie McCamant. During this 2-day workshop, she led them through the details of getting Skagit Cohousing built including the development process, costs and timelines.
From Skagit Cohousing:

"Thanks to Katie for joining us here in Anacortes and sharing her expertise, experience and wisdom. Not only did we enjoy the beautiful meeting spot on the water and had a lot of fun together, we learned the details of what it takes to successfully develop a cohousing community.

We also built relationships and began to shape the values and culture of our community. Seven households were so inspired by the fellowship, fun and very practical information that they have decided to join us as we begin the planning process!"
"WHAT AN AMAZING DAY! Six Explorer Households became Members and we will soon be having our first design workshop with our architects,  Schemata Workshop and  Ross Chapin Architects ."
Update: they went into the workshop with four households... and now, a few weeks after the workshop, they are up to 14 Member and 3 Explorer Households! Now that's what we call momentum.
Skagit Cohousing is looking for members to join before design workshops: if you are interested in living the good life in community (in the Seattle region), consider joining this great group.
Haystack Heights Creating Community in Spokane, Washington
Photo by James & Kathy Mangis
Haystack Heights in Spokane is making progress! With the help of CoHousing Solutions, they recently hired Urban Development + Partners (UD+P) and are consistently growing the group and building community each step along the way . They hope to break ground on construction this spring and have families moving in by the summer of 2020.
Rendering of Spokane Cohousing, Architecture by McCamant & Durrett Architects
About their Development Partner
"UD+P guides every aspect of the development process—finance, design, construction and management—in a way that makes a positive impact on our community while generating strong returns for investors."

You might have already heard of this development firm! Along with CoHousing Solutions, UD+P has also worked with PDX Commons, the successful and thriving senior cohousing in Portland, OR.
Check out Spokane Cohousing in the News!
Plans emerge for South Hill cohousing development
Featured in Spokane + Coeur d'Alene Living
We just love this recent article in Spokane CDA Living ! Here's an excerpt for a quick read:

"Whatever your beliefs, it is evident that we are, as a whole, suffering from isolation and division - posting our woes and needs on social media rather than knocking on a neighbor's door for perhaps that missing ingredient in a recipe, a ride to the doctor's office, someone to walk or bike with, a shoulder to cry on, or a "hey, can you keep an eye on the baby while I grab a quick shower?" Like the folk story Stone Soup illustrates, sustenance, in all forms, is possible when people come together, taking to heart the age-old proverb "it takes a village" to not only raise a child, but to build a healthy and thriving community... A village that, in these modern times, is called a cohousing community.
Villagers maintain their privacy, their belongings, their individuality, and their beliefs while living in clustered private dwellings with generous common amenities. It's like an aesthetically pleasing apartment complex with large and welcoming front porches built around a park-like setting with gardens and communal spaces that everyone benefits from and children roam free. Within cohousing communities, many faiths and different political leanings are represented but not argued over; they simply coexist, working toward a thriving and sustainable community where people connect with one another on a foundation of trust, diversity, and inclusivity."
Haystack Heights is open for more members to join!
More info on their website:
Cohousing Creates Politically and Socially Engaged Citizens
Signs saying "Cohousers do it by consensus!" and "Be the change you wish to see." Nevada City Cohousers at a Fourth of July Parade.
November 6th is coming around the corner... and you know what that means! It's time to exercise our political muscles and get out the vote. An interesting phenomenon about living in cohousing is that it seems to foster political and social engagement even in the larger community. You can often find cohousers participating in democratic efforts such as consistently voting, registering folks to vote, attending debates and rallies, and even running for elected office.

Factors such as increased social ties, increased communication skills, and a feeling of agency within your own life all contribute to the idea that political engagement is, in fact, necessary to our well-being as a society.

Curious to know if this theory checks out? See what the research says in this study by Heidi M. Berggren : “Cohousing as Civic Society: Cohousing Involvement and Political Participation in the United States.”

 The conclusion: cohousing holds out promise as a means of revitalizing democratic citizenship. What an encouraging prospect!
Living in community means you don't have to go through a ballot alone.

Example from Wolf Creek Lodge
Cohousing in action!
Excerpt from the Wolf Creek Lodge June 2018 Newsletter , by Suzanne Marriott

"Bob Branstrom led twenty Wolf Creek Lodge Cohousers in a ballot discussion after one of our common meals. About twenty of us met outside in the long-awaited warm weather where we shared information about state and local candidates and ballot measures. Everyone brought their voting materials and made notes or marked their sample ballots. Lively discussion ensued. This was cohousing at its best."
And who would have guessed... Bob is now running for city council in his town of Grass Valley! Bob’s vision for Grass Valley includes “More civic engagement: increased community involvement by our community members, where everyone feels welcome participating in our local government, nonprofit organizations, businesses, and social activities.”
I (Bethany) chatted with Bob recently, and he mentioned that in the past, he didn't think he would run for office. Sure, he was always politically inclined, but he didn't feel that he was what you'd call a "leader." It was only after moving into a cohousing community (Wolf Creek Lodge) that he began to see himself as capable and able to excel in this kind of leadership role, thus prompting him to consider running for elected office to lead in his larger community of Grass Valley.

Best of luck, Bob! We're rootin' for you.
"It was only after moving into a cohousing community that he began to see himself as capable for this kind of leadership role, thus prompting him to consider running for office to lead in the larger community."
Residents of cohousing communities invite local candidates to visit and discuss issues important to them.

Example from Nevada City Cohousing
A local candidate for Sheriff, Shannan Moon, visits the common house in Nevada City Cohousing to have a personal presentation and discussion with the cohousers.
Photo courtesy of Charles Durrett | McCamant & Durrett Architects
What's Your Story?
Do you have a story of activism and political involvement in your community? Has living in cohousing affected your level of civic engagement?
Let us know by replying to this email!
Coho/US Updates
National Cohousing Conference, Portland 2019
Call for Session Proposals EXTENDED TILL OCTOBER 31st!

Submit your proposal to present  by October 31, 2018 to facilitate or moderate at the Portland, Oregon Conference to be held May 30 to June 2, 2019. Learn more on the Conference website. They are welcoming both experienced presenters and newcomers. If you have any additional questions, contact Sheila Hoffman at
WebChat Series
"Facilitating While Listening" with Jerry Koch-Gonzalez
Upcoming WebChats in October & November:
Laird Schaub, Working Constructively with Emotions
Wed, Oct 24, 6pm Pac, 7pm Mt, 8pm Cent, 9pm East

Yana Ludwig, Introduction to Consensus
Thu, Nov 1, 6pm Pac, 7pm Mt, 8pm Cent, 9pm East

Ted Rau, Keeping Meetings Short(er)
Wed, Nov 14, 4:30pm Pac, 5:30pm Mt, 6:30pm Cent, 7:30pm East
Looking to join a cohousing community?
Here are events hosted by some amazing communities, who happen to be looking for members.
Cohousing in West Sacramento, California
Info Session
"Cohousing 101: Facts, Figures & Opportunities"
Tuesday, October 23, 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.
1018 Alkali Lane, Sacramento 95814
Light refreshments provided
RSVP to Anne Geraghty a t ( 916) 995-6629 or email
Cohousing in Durham, North Carolina
Groundbreaking Ceremony
Monday, October 29, 10:30am
"We are thrilled to reach this important milestone. Please join us in celebrating our journey from vision to construction."
See their website for more information.
Cohousing in Fair Oaks (Sacramento region), California
Coffee & Conversation
Tuesday, November 13, 7pm
126 Royalton Circle, Folsom, CA
Please RSVP to Bob Oyafuso at (916) 353-0376 or email .
Cohousing in Eugene, Oregon
Info Session
Sunday, November 18
Please call (541) 357-8303 or email  for location and details about the event.
May 30 - June 2, 2019
Portland, OR

Save the date for the National Cohousing Conference in Spring of 2019. It's an event you won't want to miss!
Considering applying in 2020? Stay in touch!
Make sure you're on the email interest list to receive updates and information about the program
We're Here to Help!
We provide development consulting services to help you create your sustainable neighborhood. Our team pioneered the development of cohousing in North America, and we have helped create dozens of successful communities.
Our newest venture involves training passionate cohousing entrepreneurs through the year-long 500 Communities Program.
Photo by Ed Asmus
Architecture by McCamant & Durrett Architects
CoHousing Solutions | (530) 478-1970
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