New homes scheme to increase affordable housing aims to build community spirit in Maryhill

New homes scheme to increase affordable housing aims to build community spirit in Maryhill
Evening Times, by Caroline Wilson


A scheme which aims to increase affordable housing, cut fuel poverty and foster community spirit is being planned for the north of Glasgow.


Glasgow City Council has been approached by a group of activists about the sale of land for a co-housing project in Collina Street in Maryhill.


Co-housing is an eco-friendly housing model whereby a group of people build, develop and then run their own community.


Everyone has their own private home, but there is also a ‘common house’ where residents can come together to socialise and share meals together, as little or as often as they like.


The scheme will be financed by Mutual Home Ownerships, where residents pay a 10% deposit towards the build cost of their home.


Each member then pays in 35% of their net income to pay off the equity rather than taking on individual mortgages.


If tenants decide to leave, they receive some of this money back.


Co-housing began in Denmark in the 1960s when young professional families bought adjoining properties to share childminding.


Now an estimated 8% of Danish households are co-housing; shared facilities now typically include gardens, maintenance and eating.


Plans for another co-housing scheme are already well underway in Glasgow.


The Penington project will create 24 properties for residents aged over 55. It is the first communal living scheme of its kind in Scotland and a site has been identified in the Pollokshields area.


The latest project – Clachan Co-Housing – will be based on the LILAC project in Leeds, which comprises 20 dwellings, a central allotment and shared garden, two small car parks, three bike sheds and a large common house.


The common house has shared facilities including washing machines, and a workshed with communal tools.


Martin Graham, who is involved in the project, said: “We have visited their project and are in contact with them to learn how they did it


“We believe that Clachan Cohousing fulfils a number of housing needs in Glasgow .


“It will create a small, self-supporting community, it will be accessible to people on a variety of incomes, it will be a self-built and self-managed project, the residents will assume full responsibility for ongoing maintenance and care, and the project will strive to be as energy efficient as possible.


“The project will be accessible to people on different incomes, since we are using a Mutual Home Ownership model for financing.


“Everyone pays the same proportion of their income towards the project.


“And if residents decide to leave, they will get some of this back.


“So the model is neither buying nor renting, but somewhere between the two.


“We are holding meetings fortnightly at present, we have been in contact with