By Leonard May
For the past 8 months, City Council has been developing an ordinance to expand the permitting of co-operative houses into low density, single family neighborhoods. This has caused a lot of pushback from neighborhoods. Why the pushback? Communal living such as co-ops and boarding houses are already allowed in certain higher density zoning districts, but not in low density single family neighborhoods. That makes sense; low density zones have low density occupancies and high density zones have high density occupancies. So, the controversy surrounding this ordinance isn’t about co-ops per se, it is about City Council’s intention to allow high density occupancies (in this case, co-ops with 12 occupants) to encroach into low density zoning districts, and the consequent disruptions caused by the traffic, parking and noise of having 12 or more people living 10 feet away in neighborhoods not designed for such.