Do you like living independently, but wish you were more connected to your neighbours?
A group of Winnipeggers who are working to establish the city’s very first “cohousing” community may have the answer for you.
The concept, inspired by similar community living models in Denmark that date back 50 years, involves a group of residents who choose to live independently, but in a community-minded way.
Cohousing advocate Frances Woolison of Prairie Rivers Cohousing told 680 CJOB the proposed local community – 30 to 50 modern, private apartments connected by a number of shared spaces – is like a throwback to a bygone era.
“Cohousing is like an old-fashioned neighbourhood where people know and care about each other,” she said.
“Each household owns their own private home and also shares their own private spaces that make it easy for neighbours to come together.
“It’s the way people have lived for most of human history. It’s only in modern days that we’ve created homes where we can drive into our garages and never interact with our neighbours.”
The cohousing concept also means a smaller environmental footprint for the residents, said Woolison, which could include residents sharing everything from small kitchen appliances to power tools to cars.
“We live in a culture that values individuality and independence – and yet we crave, and I believe human beings are made –to live together.
“So the question is how do we intentionally create a place where we have the built-in community we need, and where we still get the privacy that’s important to us?”
Prairie Rivers Cohousing is holding a public information session on Saturday at the Church of Christ on 170 St. Mary’s Road. The free event takes place at 1:30 p.m. and is open to all.
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