Gallop Parker House
Eldorado Canyon, Colorado

Logan Wiggins House
Boulder, CO

Movement Climbing and
Boulder, CO

Next West House
Boulder, Colorado

Wild Sage Cohousing
Boulder, Colorado

Wild Sage Cohousing
Boulder, Colorado

Wild Sage Cohousing is the joint venture of 34 households committed to reclaiming the comfort and safety of a tight-knit community while living lightly on the earth. The Cohousing movement is an international housing movement, which began in Denmark and has many communities in the United States. The architect and the developer mediated a consensus process in which members of the community participated in the site planning and architectural design of their own homes. Compromises between density and open space, community and privacy, allowed the project to meet the sustainability expectations of the community while enhancing quality of life.

The site design concentrates building density on the perimeter, preserving the interior of the 1.5-acre site in a layered system of private patios, semi-private garden corridors, and a community green. Trellises and plantings buffer the layers within where children safely play, and people meet by chance, or find quiet places to read a book under the trees. The units are staggered and screened from one another, with acoustic silencing details in the floor and party walls.

With one face to the green and the other to the street, the common house brings the community together for meals and activities, and also hosts events from around the neighborhood. The common house includes an airy dining room with a gourmet kitchen and a living room, and the lower level has guest rooms, a family room, a yoga room, and laundry facilities.

All buildings are oriented for optimal southern solar access. Passive technology is integral, and both photovoltaic and thermal solar panels have been added. Compact footprints, shared walls, airtight construction, energy-efficient appliances, and a shared heating system helped Wild Sage earn an EPA energy rating of Five-Star Plus, the highest attainable at the time. Indoor air quality is maintained through nontoxic finishes and air-blown nontoxic insulation. Rainwater is channeled to irrigate the gardens, and runoff is returned to the earth in vegetated swales.

Wild Sage offered a variety of units, ranging from 640 to 2,700 square feet and including 40 percent permanently affordable options and four volunteer-built Habitat for Humanity homes to welcome diversity in income, age, family size and background. It is an optimistic, realistic living experiment -- a demonstration of the interdependence between social and environmental sustainability.

Design team: Jamie Logan, Brian Bowen, Kelly Siu
Site Design: Kaythryn McCamant of Cohousing Company
Landscape Architecture: David Kahn
Developer: Wonderland Development
Contractor: Drahota Construction


  Wild Sage Cohousing             > PROJECT DESCRIPTION      
  home   contact   history