Category: Sustainability in Cohousing

Sustainability in cohousing is about developing low-cost housing options so cohousing will be available to more people. It will also be more replicable. Cohousing is a community of ~25-30 homes designed and developed by people who want to create a neighborhood together. But for various reasons, cohousing is limited to market-rate housing that is increasing in value as the market rises. The increasing prices mean cohousing is unaffordable for an increasing proportion of the population. Economically sustainable cohousing needs other models to serve more people.

Sustainability is measured by the renewability of the resource. Once oil and other fossil fuels are used, they are gone. Wood, on the other hand, is more sustainable because more trees can be grown. But then there is the argument that we are cutting down old-growth trees and replacing them with new growth that is not as strong. It would take many years for an old-growth tree to be replaced. Bamboo, on the other hand, is fast-growing and maturing, repels insects, and is stronger than wood. Some say that bamboo is stronger than steel.

It is probably best to measure sustainability as “this is more sustainable if …” The if’s include many predictions and estimations.

Sustainable Cohousing is asking what methods we can develop to create cohousing that is both economically and environmentally sustainable?