Kyloring Housing Cooperative moves into design phase

By Eugenie Stockman, CEO Co-operation Housing

Following a successful kick-off workshop, Co-operation Housing is excited to now be working with a core group of households who are committed to the successful completion of this project and to calling Kyloring home. We could not have asked for a better outcome.

The future residents of Kyloring Housing Co-operative, which will ultimately comprise about 25 dwellings, will now participate in the design of their future homes at a weekend workshop on the 27 & 28 November. The community-led approach to the development invites future residents to be involved, and take a lead, on this new development. The development is specifically for people aged 55+ or a disability and is centrally located within Witchcliffe Ecovillage.

“We firmly believe that community-led development matters”, says Eugenie Stockmann, CEO of Co-operation Housing. “Where we live and the housing we live in is a critical part of our wellbeing and happiness. Research shows that community-led housing is more likely to meet the needs of the community and create a place that residents feel proud of.”

The residents are supported in the development and design process by a team of professionals, including Co-operation Housing, H+H Architects, and The Sociocracy Consulting Group.

“The idea of the design workshop is to really include all the users as well as Co-operation Housing in the design process. It is a design-led, problem-solving adventure that we will all do together”, says Julie de Jong from H+H Architects.

Starting with a 6,223 square metre vacant block of land, the residents will work together on the site plan, deciding on the type and location of shared facilities, such as a common house. They then help to design the floor plans for the individual private dwellings.

“There is a myriad of things the group needs to make decisions on, and we know this is not always easy” says Eugenie Stockmann, CEO of Co-operation Housing.

“That is why it is important to invest in the collaboration skills of the people of this community from day one, to give them the knowledge and tools they need to create a community where people live well together”. Gina Price from The Sociocracy Consulting Group helps the group be well organised, productive, and have a culture where all voices are heard.”

The project formally kicked off at a workshop in mid-October. At this workshop households learnt more about the project, and, more importantly, got to meet each other for the first time.

“What I saw was a group of people who bring a diverse range of skills, knowledge, and life experience, and also an enormous amount of enthusiasm for the project. This is a residential development where neighbours get to know one another long before they move in. They are truly developers who never leave,” says Eugenie.

Modelled on successful senior cohousing communities worldwide, Kyloring Housing co-operative aims to be a harmonious community rich in beauty, creativity, stimulation, and fulfilment, co-designed and managed by residents committed to ageing well, sharing their knowledge and experiences, caring for each other and the natural environment. Whilst the project does not offer assisted living or nursing facilities, and each member is responsible for themselves, it is common in cohousing communities that if someone is sick, neighbours will help with activities like bringing them meals, walking their dog, or pick up medications.

Anyone can join the group by signing up as an Explorer. Being an Explorer is a great way to figure out if this project is right for you, and if the group is a good match. You will receive an in-depth orientation and are invited to internal meetings and workshops to see how it works. It is a small investment in dollars and time and offers the opportunity to be part of an innovative project that will leave a legacy.

Kyloring Housing Co-operative is an organisation owned and controlled by the members, who are the residents. The residents decide on the strategic direction and have the opportunity to participate in the ongoing management and maintenance of the development.

Free information sessions are held regularly where you can learn more. Visit the project website for more details and to register.

About Kyloring Housing Co-operative

Kyloring Housing Co-operative is a community-led housing development, specifically for people aged 55 and over or those living with a disability. The project is centrally located within Witchcliffe Ecovillage, just south of Margaret River, in the South West of WA.

About Co-operation Housing

Co-operation Housing is the umbrella organization for housing co-operatives in Western Australia. Established in 2010 to support and grow WA’s co-operative housing sector, Co-operation Housing is the only registered community housing provider (CHP) and specialist disability accommodation (SDA) provider specialising in housing co-operatives. Its existing members provide housing for low-income households.