Cohousing community to hold informational meetings | PostIndependent.com

Cohousing community to hold informational meetings

Carla Jean Whitley
cj@postindependent.com

A drawing shows a possible layout for the proposed Adesa co-housing community that is envisioned at Castle Valley Ranch in New Castle.

Nancy Thal has firsthand experience with the benefits of cohousing. As a single mother, Thal lived in a San Francisco cohousing community while completing her education. The community provided support she needed during that phase of life.

Thal is now working to introduce cohousing in New Castle. She will host two informational meetings for the proposed Adesa Community in the next month: one today in New Castle, and a second May 12 in Glenwood Springs.

The proposed community would include 20 to 24 individual housing units with shared spaces for laundry, art, exercise and more. Housing could include single-family homes, as well as duplexes and triplexes.

Cohousing like this can bring together people of various ages in a way that creates community support. That's often particularly beneficial for the elderly and families with children. The community would include an organic farm and orchard, and residents would be active participants in governing Adesa.

Thal is already in conversation with a Castle Valley Ranch landowner, who also intends to locate a medical facility and assisted living facility on the 60-acre plot of land. Adesa's precise site will be determined after those facilities select their locations.

Interested parties can walk the property on existing trails. Thal said the trails will either be sustained or rebuilt as the community is developed.

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The plan is in its early stages; those who are interested in becoming associate members can commit $100 to the project. Thal notes, though, that you can be kept in the loop without the financial commitment. Those who pay $500 now will be involved in the design process and have the first choice of home layout. In the coming months, after the site is defined, Thal expects members will spend another $5,000 each to continue the community's architecture design and engineering.

Ultimately, all residents will need their own mortgages. She estimates those will run from $200,000 to $500,000, though costs will become clearer as the project advances.

Thal will attend the International Cohousing Conference in Boulder next weekend, and while there she will meet with a developer with whom she's in conversation. They will work together to develop a budget for the community build out.

The completed community is likely two to three years away.

"It's the way I want to grow old," said Thal, who is 67. "I see and understand the support the elders get in this kind of community, where their happiness is just as important as their health."

Details

Adesa Community meetings

Saturday, 4-6 p.m. New Castle Community Center

May 12, 4-6 p.m. Glenwood Springs branch library

Learn more at adesacommunity.com