SomerVille Ecovillage

Last updated: August 22, 2009 (6 years ago)

Listing created on: January 24, 2005

SomerVille Ecovillage

(Chidlow, Western Australia, Australia)

Mission Statement:

Ecovillage, Perth, Australia

Community Description:

SomerVille Ecovillage is in Chidlow in the Perth Hills in Western Australia. The land (399 acres or 162 hectares) was purchased by the community in 2002. Permaculture principles and Pattern Language are used in the village design. The village will be self-sufficient in water and electricity with the electrical power coming from photovoltaic panels. This is a community-based project where community consultation has shaped the design and evolution of the ecovillage. Rezoning of the land at the state government level was achieved in August 2007. Construction of the infrastructure is to commence soon followed by the construction of residences. There are still opportunities (if you are quick!) for families, individuals and businesses to become involved. The SomerVille Vision is “A vibrant village where community flourishes, in which every person is supported and contributes in balance with a sustainable ecological ethic.”



  • Area: 399 acres
  • Current Number of Residences: 2
  • Land owned by: The Community
  • Additional Comments: While some of the land is cleared, other areas are reverting to native bush.

    The land was purchased in 2002 using loans from members.

    There is currently 1 family living on the land.

    Cohousing is one of the options available.


  • Adult Members: 2
  • Percent Women: 51-60%
  • Percent Men: 31-40%
  • Visitors accepted: Yes
  • Visitor Process: Visitors should check the web site for current visiting arrangements:

  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Membership Process: New members are encouraged
  • Additional Comments: Spiritual development is encouraged.

    There will be a diverse range of religions/spiritual paths and diversity is encouraged.

    Various options are available including local public and private schools (including Christian, Steiner and Montessori) and some families in the community already home school.


  • Decision Making: Other
  • Identified Leader: No
  • Leadership Core Group: Yes
  • Additional Comments: Decisions made by Board.

    Leadership is provided by the Board.

    Decision making tends to be consent.


  • Dues, Fees, or Shared Expenses: Yes
  • Shared Income: Members have completely independent finances
  • Required Labor Contribution per Week: 0
  • Open to members with existing debt: Yes
  • Additional Comments: Economic leakage is minimised where possible.

    New members are encouraged.

    Members are encouraged to attend working bees.

    An annual fee exists for Association membership.

    An annual body corporate fee will apply to home owners.

Sustainability Practices

  • Current food produced: 0%, or close to 0%


  • Shared meals: 1-3 times per month
  • Dietary Practice: Omnivorous (plants and animals)
  • Dietary Choice or Restrictions: Not at all important – people may eat however they individually choose.
  • Alcohol Use: Yes, used occasionally.
  • Tobacco Use: Yes, used occasionally.
  • Additional Diet Comments: Community meals will become more frequent once more members are living on the site.

    There will be a community supported agriculture scheme.

    Community members are free to choose their own diet.

    There is wide diversity in dietary practices within the community.

    The community imposes no restrictions on alcohol use.

    The community imposes no restrictions on tobacco use.

  • Common Spiritual Practice(s): Other
  • Education Style(s): Home Schooling, Private School off the property, Public Schooling, Up to each individual

Additional Comments

The community is at Chidlow – a village approximately 50 kms east of Perth, Western Australia.

Awaiting construction of infrastructure

Photo Gallery

Fair Housing Laws

This community acknowledges that their listing does not include any potential violations of the Fair Housing Law, or that they do not provide housing. For any questions about this topic please see our Content Policies and contact FIC with any questions or concerns:

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