Why I’m interested:My wife, Sara, and I are young working professionals who seek to create a co-housing community in Saratoga Springs, NY. I’m originally from upstate New York. Sara, an Oregon native, and I have explored co-housing for a number of years, visiting communities around the country and studying its precepts. We are looking to create a multi-generational community in Saratoga Springs.
Saratoga is a dynamic, cultured small city in the Capital District of New York. The natural beauty of the Adirondack Park, Lake George, and the Hudson Valley are ready at hand. Saratoga is centrally located on a major highway system, minutes from an international airport. New York City is three hours away, as are Montreal and Boston. Amtrak runs service to Saratoga as well, which boasts a major performing arts center, the race track, a thriving business district, and many fine schools. The region is one of the fastest growing in the state, with major employers in the area.
We desire to live in co-housing for many reasons. The research is clear that people thrive in community. Humans are social creatures built for cooperation and being together. Co-housing improves your quality of life in many areas, leading to more joy, happiness, and connection to others. As we look to having kids in the future, we seek to build a community that shares the joys of parenting and child-rearing in a more communal way. We seek a space where the young, middle aged, and old live together, creating generational solidarity. The elderly need children, and children love grandparents. And parents needs help doing the many tasks on our plate!
Moreover, we seek a community where children have ample opportunities for play with other kids on a daily basis. The studies all show that such spontaneous group play leads to happier, healthier, more socialized kids–crucial in this age of smart phones. By the same token, having play groups allows parents to reclaim their own time for various endeavors and improving the quality of their relationships. Child-rearing could include options for schooling in various models: self-directed, Montessori, home-driven, etc.
Likewise, we envision a co-housing community that practices democratic decision making, reclaims the art of interpersonal conversation and deliberation, and offers ourselves in service to the wider world–the city, state, nation, planet. On that score, sustainability is a key component of co-housing: we wish to create a community that practices sustainable, just habits of consumption when it comes to energy. We envision community gardens in the space to supplement our food system, and shared meals.
We envision regular entertainment evenings–movie nights, music recitals, dramatic recitations, and more. Ample areas and tools for adults and kids to play and make merry. A library for study and self-enrichment. Outreach projects with the poor and lonely in the wider city.
Life is difficult. But we can make joy together. In our brief pilgrimage through this fascinating world, we seek to build a life where the bonds of community–from shared meals, to shared labor, to shared social time–nourish our minds and hearts. If you have always dreamed of living together in community–while having ample time for solitude–please contact us. We would love to hear from you!