An applied research project on cohousing and collective ownership models for reclaiming affordable habitat quality in Athens
CoHab Athens is an open group, an exchange platform for urban researchers, activists and anyone interested in claiming housing as a right and exploring alternative housing models through self-management and collective ownership. It was created as a research group in 2016, driven by the need of its members not only to understand and describe the crisis and the developments in the housing sector which has been taking place in Greece the past few years, but also to seek effective antidotes to it. Drawing inspiration from successful cooperative housing models that have been implemented abroad, CoHab Athens is holding an ongoing participatory design workshop since November 2017 in order to diagnose local needs related to housing, as well as to explore the possibilities for the creation of the first project of cooperative housing/collective ownership in Athens. Aiming to the decommodification of urban land and active manifestation of the right to the city we seek and promote synergies with existing paradigms that have successfully been implemented and with similarly oriented ongoing projects.
CoHab Athens, in the context of Greek reality, aims to:
– explore the existing legal framework and propose appropriate regulatory amendments
– cultivate the imaginary of collective property and familiarize people in Athens with the principles and practices of cohousing
– work out realistic scenarios and prototypes of alternative ownership of urban land and test them through pilot case studies in the center of Athens.
– create physical and online tools to promote and support the idea
– support and empower local groups that are interested to implement a cohousing project
– engage in international networks of cooperation and knowledge sharing
Insecurity of housing;
Structural transformation regarding ownership;
Intense Commodification of housing;
Lack of neighborhood infrastructures;
Insufficient (and poorly maintained) public spaces;
Large percentage of inactive properties;
Ageing, poor quality building stock;
Unemployment and poverty;
Lack of social welfare, funding and state support;
How to address the new housing needs through citizens synergies beyond State intervention?
How to reactivate and upgrade existing buildings and public space in favor of citizens and neighborhoods?
How to create affordable housing quality?
How to resist neighbourhood gentrification and real estate speculation/commodification?
Tools & Methods
Community Land Bank, Social Cooperatives (Κοιν.Σ.Επ.), Legal Innovation, Local currency, Crowdfunding, Architectural Interventions, Time-sharing, Circular Economy, Retrofitting polykatikia, Energy community, Participatory Mapping, General Assembly, Negotiation protocols
Housing as a Right, Collective Ownership, Decommodification of housing, Self-organization, Equality, Social diversity, Conviviality, Democratic Decision-Making, Sharing, Knowledge Building, Glocal Networking, Ecological Vision, Urban Commons Infrastructure, Re-localisation of Economy, Inclusive Neighbourhood
We are an interdisciplinary group from diverse backgrounds, we work and live in the center of the city, we are interested in experimenting with alternative housing models and collective ways of urban life and to help create the infrastructure and resources for our common future in the city. As an open, independent group we use participatory processes, working on a volunteer basis.