Pioneer Valley

North Amherst, Massachusetts, United States

  • Last updated: December 4, 2018 (2 seconds ago)
  • Listing created on: December 31, 1999

Mission Statement

We do not have a mission statement

Community Description

The Pioneer Valley Cohousing set out to create a living environment that encourages a strong sense of community, supports our need for privacy, makes life affordable, and provides a secure and enriched setting for children and adults. We have a place where people know their neighbors in a meaningful way, a neighborhood where different traditions and values are respected, and where we can all have a sense of security and belonging. Even after so many years together, we are still a work in progress, continuing to get better and better at living our values and goals.

Our group purchased a 23-acre meadow site in north Amherst where we built 32 units and a large common house, moving in June – September 1994. We built a clustered mix of single, duplex, and triplex buildings on seven of those acres. The rest is field and woods, surrounded by town lands.

Residents own their own homes, as well as a share of the land and the common house. The common house is a place for community dinners, meetings, entertainment, and other public and private functions. It includes a large kitchen/dining room, children’s playroom, guest rooms, laundry facilities, library, sauna, exercise room, and recycling center.

We have optional (but well-attended) dinners two nights a week, gardens, play and work spaces, hiking trails, and other shared amenities chosen by residents have social and economic advantages.

The community is a short walk from a municipal lake; a recreation park with tennis, swimming, and playing fields; a small shopping center; a library; the university; and public transportation.

  • Status: Established (At least 4+ adults, 2+ years)
  • Started Planning: 1989
  • Start Living Together: 1994
  • Visitors accepted: Yes
  • Open to new Members: Yes
  • Please read the details in Membership below before contacting this community. Send Message
  • Website address:
  • Contact Name: Membership
  • Phone: 413 549 3655
  • Community Address:
    120 Pulpit Hill Rd #1
    North Amherst, Massachusetts, 01002
    United States
  • Location


  • Type(s): Cohousing (individual homes within group owned property)
  • Location: Small Town or Village


  • Status: We have land we have developed on
  • Area: 23 acres
  • Current Residence Types: Single-family homes, Multi-family homes
  • Current Number of Residences: 32
  • Housing Provided: Purchase
  • Land owned by: The Community
  • Additional Comments:



  • Adult Members: 75
  • Child Members: 20
  • Non-member Residents: 15
  • Percent Women: 51-60%
  • Percent Men: 31-40%
  • Percent Transgender: 1-10%
  • Visitors accepted: Yes
  • Visitor Process:

    People may visit any time, but if you would like a tour, contact John Porcino john.porcino(at) or 413-549-5448.

    If you are interested in gettting on our waiting list,first email for information on the community, then contact John Porcino for a community tour.

  • Open to new Members: Yes


  • Decision Making: Sociocracy
  • Identified Leader: No
  • Leadership Core Group: Yes


  • Dues, Fees, or Shared Expenses: Yes
  • Shared Income: None
  • Required Labor Contribution per Week: 1.5
  • Additional Comments:

    Our guidelines ask for 6-8 hours work per month perperson. Reality is that there is a wide variation in work hours and types of jobs.

    We are legally a condominium and collect condo fees monthly.

Sustainability Practices

  • Energy Infrastructure: We are connected to the grid.
  • Current renewable energy generation: Up to 25%
  • Energy sources: Solar
  • Planned renewable energy generation: 50-75%
  • Current food produced: Up to 25%
  • Food produced locally: Between 26-49%


  • Common Facilities: Common House, Garden(s), Greenhouse(s), Vehicle Share, Library, Workshop, Large Scale Kitchen, Tractor & Farm Equipment, Swingsets & play areas, Internet
  • Internet Available: Yes, community provides it
  • Internet Fast?: Yes, it’s fine.
  • Cell Phone Service: Good for most people.
  • Shared meals: 2-5 times per week
  • Dietary Practice: Omnivorous (plants and animals)
  • Dietary Choice or Restrictions: No – people may eat however they wish.
  • Special Diets OK: Yes
  • Alcohol Use: Yes, used occasionally.
  • Tobacco Use: No, this community does not permit tobacco use.
  • Additional Diet Comments:

    Community Meals are cooked Mondays and Wednesdays

  • Education Style(s): Home Schooling, Public Schooling, Up to each family or individual
  • Healthcare Options: Up to each family or individual

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Community Network or Organization Affiliations