ACO -Affordable Cohousing
Housing to cater for different needs, sizes; allow inclusivity increase social interaction and therefore wellbeing.
LOCATION: urban environment – two/three storey high 20-40 flat ‘blocks’
SOCIAL INTERCTION: community space; common facilities ie: laundry; kitchen/dining room with library; play area; gameroom; workshop area – common tools/tool hire; corridors and viewing platforms; care share; offering public space; shared childcare/shopping/look after each-other; bike and scooter storage; community shop;
SAFETY & SECURITY: surveillance by front looking living rooms; shops and workshop; rest areas (e.g. benches); optional rooftop balcony; homezone area – incl. lower traffic speed. Enclosed common spaces particularly playground. The ‘side effect’ of community design is the better care of other members of the community.
LIVING COMFORT: adaptable spaces & flats (i.e. easy to convert two units into a large family home); one to 4 bedroom flats including accessible homes; green areas; shop and café.
GREEN FACILITIES & GARDEN: clustered heating from renewables (e.g. PV; hydro or biomass depending on location) – here solar tiles; considered green options: breathable wall construction (i.e. CLT; or timber frame with compressed hemp or straw) – they can be recycled at end of life; rain water collection; grey water recycling; low -impact building foundation (lighter weight also allows lighter foundations); green roof also part of public space; flood resistant ground floor – designed for possible floods; heat recovery system – MVHR; use of reclaimed materials
Back units can made of upcycled shipping containers for storage and teen`s area
FINANCES: two most expensive areas are the groundworks and labour are eliminated by low-impact foundations (possible plinth) and modular construction, this is also less prone to the impact of the weather and speeds up the building process. Insulated walls/roof/floor – less heating & cooling costs; maximising solar gain by window orientation. Natural light with orientation and glazing.
PRIVACY: although there are shared areas, the flats are individual spaces, optionally noise insulated for better privacy; possible opaque and mirrored windows on exposed areas e.g. ground floor flat play area window.
SPACE: although flats sizes are slightly reduced to encourage social interaction, the flats are designed with to accommodate comfortable living with adaptable spaces and few internal walls ie. kitchen/dining/living room are designed as open spaces. Storage units are at the back of the building; space for scooters, bikes and priority for shared cars in garage
TECHNOLOGY & DESIGN: first consideration is the optimal orientation to benefit most from sunshine and reduce heating/cooling need. Accumulators and hot water storage; smart technology on the extent of affordability
+1 HEALTH & INCLISIVITY: social interaction improves health and well-being; area for children and teenagers; common spaces encourage interaction and exercise (latter by moving out and about); breathable walls minimise VOC and condensation (therefore mould growth and structure weakening); different type of accommodations: studio flats; accessible flats; large families;
AFFORDABILITY: Due to modularity building time can be reduced significantly, as well as labour cost. Reduced foundations also reduce costs. Due to earlier completion rent prices arrive earlier. This allows lower rent. High insulation and additional renewable sources lower heating and cooling costs. Car share.