WHAT's IN THE MEDIA

Meet the Architect Who’s Designing (and Living in) Houston’s First Cohousing Community

Houstonia

Home & Realestate

By Laura Furr Mericas

Feb. 2, 2021

HOUSTON’S FIRST-EVER COHOUSING COMMUNITY IS UNDERWAY in the East End: Last spring, a group of like-minded livers selected a site at 115 Lennox Ave to construct Cohousing Houston, which puts connection and the environment ahead of just about everything else.

Kathleen English, founder of English + Associates Architects, and her husband are one of 14 member households that are already onboard for the project that’s slated to wrap up in fall 2022. She and her firm also happen to be designing the property and homes there—which range from $330,000 to $780,000 for one to four bedrooms—with the help of Caddis Collaborative out of Boulder, Colorado. 

English spoke with Houstonia about cohabitating, coworking, and even co-gardening in the community.  

Texas’ First Cohousing is Coming to the East End

Houston Chronicle Business

Real-estate: Looped In

R.A. SchuetzNancy Sarnoff

Nov. 6, 2020

We’ve all heard of coworking. But cohousing? Not so much. That’s because there are no cohousing communities in Texas, something a group of Houstonians are planning to change.

They’re designing a 33-unit condominium in the East End where a sense of community will be the key amenity, a need for which they believe the pandemic has underscored. Think shared meals (or, during socially distant times, outdoor happy hours) and decision-making that revolves around consensus, not votes.

Opinion: Designing togetherness during a pandemic? Cohousing groups say shared community a lifeline

Houston Chronicle Opinion: Outlook

Torie Ludwin, Sep. 26, 2020

Kelli Soika knows the value of a great neighbor. Her old neighbors were the kind of people who notice and care about those around them: A quick wave from the window when you walk past, an answered call when you worry that you left your stove on, or an offer of a beer when you’re reading on your porch on a hot afternoon. Great neighbors make everyone’s lives better. They make a community a richer place.

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Designing Togetherness: Cohousing Arrives in Houston

Rice Design Alliance

Torie Ludwin, Sep. 3, 2020

For the past seventy-five years, residential architecture has prioritized the individual private space of the single-family home. Outside, the car has dominated the transportation landscape, diminishing the possibility for people to interact with each other and to establish a sense of community and connection with others. The cohousing paradigm attempts to make changes to this dynamic, and it’s coming to Houston.

Cohousing is a form of communal living that organizes private residences and shared public spaces together into a larger residential arrangement. Examples of cohousing have been realized throughout the United States since the early 1990s. Now Cohousing Houston (CH), a newly formed local group, is laying the groundwork to be the first cohousing project in Texas.

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Texas' first cohousing community puts land under contract in East End

Houston Chronicle Business

Real-estate (Prime Property)

R.A. Schuetz

Mar. 3, 2020

A group of people looking to build a cohousing condo development -- a type of housing with a focus on communal living -- has land in the East End under contract.  If developed, the project would likely be the first cohousing community in the state.

Cohousing is a collection of private homes grouped around shared spaces that usually include a communal kitchen and dining area, a guest house and a garden. While shared spaces are nothing new — condominiums and neighborhood associations typically offer communal rooftop decks or clubhouses — shared spaces in cohousing developments are not designed to serve as amenities, but as keystones to community. Common dining areas are home to regularly-scheduled communal meals that aim to bring neighbors closer together.