Please join us on May 29th from 1-3pm at the Adirondack Park Agency headquarters in Ray Brook. We will hear from a Finnish participant in the recent international exchange program between Heureka, the Finnish Science Center, and our own Wild Center in Tupper Lake. Markku Seppanen is an architect with extensive experience in cohousing and intentional communities, working with Finnmap Consulting; his wife Paivi Alasuutari will also present on the involvement of residents in planning the projects. This event will also be streamed live online at http://nysapa.granicus.com/ViewPublisher.php?view_id=2. Markku will describe his work creating two projects, both with houses grouped together, including one with "green" or sustainable building techniques. The social and community aspects of cohousing projects are often as important as the building approaches, thus Markku will also describe intensive participatory planning processes carried out on both projects. Residents participated in planning with architects and structural/HVAC designers. There will be time for Q&A period when attendees can share experiences, ask detailed questions, and find out more about building sites, construction and organization.
Some terms: A cluster home is an American term for a type of housing, also called a patio home. The term tends to imply a suburban setting and a unit of several houses attached to each other, typically with shared walls between units, and with exterior maintenance and landscaping provided through an association fee (from Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cluster_house). A cohousing community is a type of intentional community composed of private homes supplemented by shared facilities. The community is planned, owned and managed by the residents - who also share activities which may include cooking, dining, child care, gardening, and governance of the community. Common facilities may include a kitchen, dining room, laundry, child care facilities, offices, internet access, guest rooms, and recreational features (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cohousing). Cluster housing is very common form of housing in Finland which has more homes in cluster houses than in apartment buildings. Cohousing is a newer concept and increasing with perhaps 50 existing co-housing projects to date. Cohousing is often combined with cluster houses, since by having room for common use the private space of each home can be reduced thus saving money and space.