McKenzie Green Commons

Last updated: July 8, 2015 (1 month ago)
Listing created on: August 5, 2011

McKenzie Green Commons

(Bellingham, Washington, United States)
Disbanded Community

  • Status: Disbanded
  • Formed: 2011
  • Visitors accepted: Yes, rarely
  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Contact Name: Prentiss Cole
  • Address:
    1506 McKenzie Ave.
    Bellingham, Washington, 98225
    United States
  • This Community has Disbanded

    High land and building costs; a lack of a sufficient number of seniors willing and able to risk designing a house and joining others in creating a self-managed community; complicated, unclear and restrictive city regulations; and reluctant lenders were the primary reasons for the failure of McKenzie Green Commons. (See “Community Description” below for original vision.)

  • Visitor Process

    Visitors accepted: Yes, rarely

  • Membership Process

    Open to new Members: Yes
    Attend functions
    Make financial commitment

Mission Statement:

Active seniors who care about our planet, seek meaningful relationships yet respect privacy and to live in energy efficient homes.

Community Description:

UPDATE -07/08/2015

The vision was to create a community with twelve modest, energy efficient, green individually owned, modest single family homes within a tranquil natural setting; for active adults, 55 plus, who cared deeply about our environment and the impact we have on our planet; and, where there was shared desire for meaningful relationships balanced with the need for privacy and independence in Fairhaven the historic neighborhood of Bellingham, Washington.

Given all the circumstances involved this could not become a reality. (See reasons above for disbanding.)


  • Adult Members: 12
  • Percent Women: 50%
  • Percent Men: 50%
  • Visitors accepted: Yes, rarely
  • Open to new Members: Yes

Social Factors

  • Common Spiritual Practice(s): Ecumenical (accepts all religions or spiritual practices), Other
  • Healthcare Style(s): Up to each individual


  • Decision Making: By a council, group of Elders, or leadership group
  • Identified Leader: Yes, multiple identified leaders
  • Leadership Core Group: Yes

Land and Buildings

  • Housing Provided: Yes, for all or most members.
  • Location: Urban
  • Area: 1 acre
  • Land owned by: Community controlled land trust
  • Current number of residences: 12
  • Current renewable energy generation: Up to 25%
  • Planned renewable energy generation: 25-50%
  • Energy sources: Connected to the Grid, Solar
  • Additional Comments: 7 market rate homes
    5 assisted ownership (by KulshanCLT)

Labor and Money

  • Shared Income: Members have completely independent finances
  • Shared Expenses: Partial share of expenses
  • Open to members with existing debt: Yes
  • Required Labor contribution: No
  • Join Fee: No
  • Regular Fee: 0
  • Additional Comments: Everyone must be pre-qualified

    Each household needs to attend meetings (infrequent)


  • Shared meals: 1-3 times per month
  • Current food produced: 0%, or close to 0%
  • Planned food produced: 0%, or close to 0%
  • Food produced locally: Determined by Individuals or Households.
  • Dietary Choice or Restrictions: Not at all important – people may eat however they individually choose.
  • Dietary Practice: Omnivorous (plants and animals)
  • Alcohol Use: Yes, used occasionally.
  • Tobacco Use: No, this community does not permit tobacco use.

Community Network or Organization Affiliations

The Fellowship for Intentional Community (FIC)


Two blocks to market, trails, library, restuarants; green, energy efficient, open space, socail hall

We happily link to the following organizations, all of whom share our strong commitment to promoting community and a more cooperative world:
Cohousing The Federation of Egalitarian Communities - Communes Coop Community Cooperative Sustainable Intentional North American Students of Cooperation Global Ecovillage Network
Special thanks to the sponsors of our Art of Community Events.
Bryan Bowan Architects California Cohousing International Communes Desk ICSA NICA Wolf Creek Lodge