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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Cohousing, a movement that started in Denmark

Cohousing building momentum in Mass. - The Boston Globe
Cohousing, a movement that started in Denmark in the 1980s, has been steadily spreading from Western Massachusetts into urban areas, and catching on with a new generation of frugal, environmentally conscious folks.

Carbon footprints and tight household budgets weigh on a lot of city dwellers’ minds, its champions point out. Security, safety, and building a sense of community do, too. Cohousing addresses all of these concerns, they maintain. For young adults and parents of growing families, it means a more neighborly way of living than an apartment complex normally offers. For seniors, it often allows “aging in place’’ with members of multiple generations.

Cheaper. Cleaner. More democratic. More congenial. More stimulating. What’s not to like?

“Massachusetts has become one of the hotbeds of cohousing,’’ said Craig Ragland, executive director of the Cohousing Association of the United States. By Ragland’s count, there are 120 established cohousing communities across the country, including preexisting neighborhood complexes retrofitted to the cohousing model.