Great approach to housing.

In times of excessive housing prices and a great need to house low income key workers in our city of Sydney, Copper Lane is an exciting approach we should learn from. As noted in the article:

Copper Lane review - an appealing, harmonious, cost-effective model for communal living

London's first co-housing project strikes an elegant balance between communal living and leafy seclusion

'One of the pleasures of the project is the multiplicity of ways of occupying it': Copper Lane in Stoke Newington, London.

This sounds like the reality show from hell: seven adults and six children, not all known to each other at the start, get together to design and build six houses for themselves. They borrow money, buy a piece of land with no planning permission attached, hire architects, other professionals and a building contractor. They negotiate with each other as to who gets what bit of the project for what money. Six years later they move in. The builder has recently presented the final bill, making a total construction cost of £1.8m, against earlier, inevitably optimistic, estimates of £1.45m. "We've only just figured out how much each of us will pay," says one of the residents, Simon Bayly.

Their development, called Copper Lane, has no private gardens or washing machines, but shared open spaces, a laundry and a communal room for parties, music and games, which have to be collectively managed and maintained. The project could have been a fusion of Big Brother, Changing Rooms and, for the bravado with which those involved seem to have taken on a possibly impossible task, The Apprentice. Yet, far from sinking into a stew of acrimony, they seem to be on as good terms as ever, as they discuss who gets to use the new communal leaf-blower.

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