Marking 20 years
of bold journalism,
reader supported.
Events, contests and other initiatives by The Tyee and select partners.

East Van Cohousing Offers Community-Oriented Vision

In a city where it can be hard to find connection and support, people are working together to find livable solutions.

East Van Cohousing 7 Feb 2024The Tyee

Finding a place to live in Vancouver is difficult. Finding community can be even harder.

The members of East Van Cohousing have made the decision to stay in the city while making a more intentional choice to be surrounded by a community that know and cares about them.

Putting together a development plan for a 35-unit multifamily apartment building this past year, East Van Cohousing members asked: How do you want your day-to-day experience to be? What are the values you want to see represented in your world? Do you want to get to know your neighbours, so you can feel more connected to your community?

Typically, cohousing development can take seven to 10 years, but thanks to a very committed team, the project off Kingsway and 33rd, with generous common spaces, is already in the design stage of working with architects.

Of course, no plan avoids Vancouver’s complicated zoning and building codes. B.C.’s recently passed Bill 47 will give substantially more density to the project, which is a short walk to the 29th and Nanaimo SkyTrain station.

The extra density raises another important question: How many people does it take to have a community feel where you know your neighbours? Typically, 60-80 people is around the average size of cohousing, but adding more floors means more units and lower costs for residents. East Van Cohousing is still trying to figure out what works best for the community.

The project is based on covering just the cost of the building, which will be similar to market prices. Of course, that’s a tough sell in a city where the average condo costs in the ballpark of $800,000. But East Van Cohousing members are committed to making it work.

Research shows that an active community increases life expectancy and enjoyment. According to the My Health My Community survey by the University of British Columbia and local health authorities, people with lower levels of social connectedness report higher levels of stress, and 43 per cent of lower mainland residents report low or very low sense of community belonging.

Cohousing is a fitting answer to the question of how to live one’s life. Everyone has their own full apartment but the community gets together a few times a week in a common space to share meals and discuss their lives and families.

It’s living in a safe community, where kids can run around without parents worrying and a multigenerational group of adults can share their lives together in a supportive and caring environment.

It’s living social, community-oriented values every day. In a world that is increasingly complex and confusing, coming home to neighbours that are truly friends is a beautiful way to live.

If you’d like more information on East Van Cohousing, visit their website. They’re currently accepting new members who can commit financially by May 2024.  [Tyee]

Read more: Housing

This article is part of a Tyee Presents initiative. Tyee Presents is the special sponsored content section within The Tyee where we highlight contests, events and other initiatives that are either put on by us or by our select partners. The Tyee does not and cannot vouch for or endorse products advertised on The Tyee. We choose our partners carefully and consciously, to fit with The Tyee’s reputation as B.C.’s Home for News, Culture and Solutions. Learn more about Tyee Presents here.

  • Share:

Get The Tyee's Daily Catch, our free daily newsletter.

Tyee Commenting Guidelines

Comments that violate guidelines risk being deleted, and violations may result in a temporary or permanent user ban. Maintain the spirit of good conversation to stay in the discussion and be patient with moderators. Comments are reviewed regularly but not in real time.


  • Be thoughtful about how your words may affect the communities you are addressing. Language matters
  • Keep comments under 250 words
  • Challenge arguments, not commenters
  • Flag trolls and guideline violations
  • Treat all with respect and curiosity, learn from differences of opinion
  • Verify facts, debunk rumours, point out logical fallacies
  • Add context and background
  • Note typos and reporting blind spots
  • Stay on topic

Do not:

  • Use sexist, classist, racist, homophobic or transphobic language
  • Ridicule, misgender, bully, threaten, name call, troll or wish harm on others or justify violence
  • Personally attack authors, contributors or members of the general public
  • Spread misinformation or perpetuate conspiracies
  • Libel, defame or publish falsehoods
  • Attempt to guess other commenters’ real-life identities
  • Post links without providing context

Most Popular

Most Commented

Most Emailed


The Barometer

Should Fossil Fuel Ads Be Restricted?

Take this week's poll