We are a group of 12 adult LLC (equity) member households and 6 Explorer households in Metro Northwest Boston MA, aiming to build the first senior cohousing community in New England. We have land under agreement in Littleton and are preparing to file our permit application.
We envision a mixed neighborhood of cottage-style duplexes and triplexes with livable front porches and small back gardens that can be privatized, along with some stacked flats in a three story building. There will be a large common house with extensive amenities, including a gourmet kitchen, great room, woodworking and craft areas, exercise room, and guest/caregiver rooms. There will be abundant outdoor shared green space, including a community vegetable garden.
Our project was launched in March 2016 by our founders, who then spent a year laying the groundwork for the project, consulting with cohousing leaders, town officials, developers, and architects, and running several informational meetings at churches and libraries, getting large attendances. The first core group of about seven or eight people began meeting regularly in January 2017.
In September 2017 we engaged Katie McCamant (Cohousing Solutions, Inc.) as our cohousing development consultant. We began to get good membership documents in place and started focusing on marketing. We created a website. We began holding info sessions and follow-up potlucks on a monthly basis. We created an online newsletter using Constant Contact and committed to putting it out every month. In July 2018, we partnered with a local developer, who began looking for land for us and committed to being our project manager once we have land under contract. We also began taking trainings in sociocracy, our chosen system of governance.
In September 2018, our membership suddenly quadrupled from five to twenty, and we began to implement a sociocratic organizational structure with the help of Jerry Koch Gonzales, founder of Sociocracy for All.
Our mailing list has over 1000 names. We are moving forward with growing our group, member commitments, implementing sociocracy, growing our group identity and cohesiveness, and site search.
Our biggest success story so far has been in community building among our participants, and that has much to do with our operating system, sociocracy. People are engaged, energized, finding new connections, and having fun together. Last summer 20 of us went on a weekend retreat to a lake in New Hampshire. Dorm life for seniors?
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