PHILADELPHIA, PA.- Moore College of Art & Design
will host its inaugural Graduate Symposia: Cohousing: Building Sustainable and Intentional Communities, a free day-long program on October 10, 2009. The symposia, sponsored by the Interior Design Graduate Program at Moore, includes discussion and discovery about the history, theories and practice of creating and living in cohousing.
The Cohousing Symposia will cover the concepts and practicalities of cohousing in the United States and features Charles Durrett, architect and author of the seminal text on cohousing, as the keynote speaker. Other leaders in the field Tom Bath, Laura Fitch, Scott Kelly, Jackie ONeil, and Donald E. Tucker will each discuss specific components and aspects of cohousing communities. The afternoon will be divided into two sessions of afternoon workshops with the speakers expanding upon the morning presentations.
Charles Durrett has designed over 40 cohousing communities in North America and has consulted on many more around the world. A leading cohousing architect, Durrett is credited with coining the term cohousing and together with his wife Kathryn McCamant McCamant, introduced cohousing projects to America. Durrett and McCamant have won numerous awards, including the United Nations World Habitat Award and the Best of 50+ Housing Award (National Home Builders Association 2008). Durret is the author of three books on the topic, Senior Cohousing: A Community Approach to Independent Living his most recent was published this spring by New Society Publishers.
With its roots in Denmark in the early seventies, cohousing communities first surfaced in the US in the 1990s. Cohousing is described as intergenerational neighborhoods created by residents to efficiently meet their needs, wants and desires for a mutually beneficial environment for raising children or growing older. Enhancing a common quality of life and living lighter on the planet are two goals of the movement that have attracted young families, single parents, singles and retired couples to this housing option. Since 1972, nearly 400 projects have been completed in Denmark. Since 1990, nearly 100 intergenerational communities and three elder communities have been created in the United States.
The Interior Design Graduate Program at Moore College of Art & Design is one of three new co-educational graduate programs launched by the College this summer.