Here are a couple sketches for a concept cohousing ‘temple’, starting with the overall floor plan.The sizes of the rooms are approximately to scale with the number and sizes of shared living rooms and guest rooms based on my assumption of how much entertaining and hosting people may be doing. Each guest suite has its own bathroom.

In addition to the residents hosting friends and family, the guest suites would host people visiting for meditation retreats and arts & crafts workshops, or residents of affiliated communities with which there are reciprocal visiting privileges.

There isn’t a separate meditation hall since the folks living in this cohousing will likely be fairly quiet and mellow and guests can just meditate wherever, such as the roof garden, courtyard, gardens, shared living rooms that are not otherwise in use, etc.

The art and craft studio is very large and assumes everyone wants a fair amount of studio space, space for roller presses, 3-D printers, beer making equipment, etc. A separate woodworking and gardening workshop is included. These spaces would also accommodate the guests and teachers visiting to present workshops.

Some of the classic arts and crafts practiced and/or taught to guests could include magic, astronomy, throat singing, contact juggling, engraving, playing early instruments like the cornetto and natural horns, cookery, classical languages (Latin, Occitan, Pāli, etc.), printmaking including true woodcut and wood engraving, poetry, bowyery, knot tying and knot invention, woodworking, mace and baton spinning, gemstone faceting, telescope making, calligraphy, pipe making, guillochierei, sculpture, gardening, keyboarding, drink mixing, cardistry, reed making, and cheese making.

The dining room is sized based on the dining room of the S.F. Zen Center, with an excellent professional kitchen including a teppanyaki. It’s expected that dinners inviting all the residents and guests should occur several times per week.

The library assumes a very generous 20 linear feet of books and media per person for the common library.

A few bathrooms are scattered around for convenient access from the living rooms, dining room, etc.

The central area could be either a colonnaded courtyard, or for (quite a) few dollars more, roofed with a cross vault or dome as an indoor grand atrium. This courtyard space would be good for movie nights, concerts, dancing parties, etc. This sort of indoor/outdoor living implies building in a warm climate without too many cold nights, implying a location in coastal California or Hawaii.

There can be expected to be extensive gardens on the property, including a rose garden, many fair-scented flowers, a tree plantation for growing hardwoods, boxwood, frankincense, peaches, etc.

Plenty of parking should be included the community’s shared self-driving cars, as well as guest parking.

The next diagram focuses on the individual condos.


This design assumes each person would have their own mini-condo. Access access to the walk-in closet and bathroom is from bedroom via pocket door. The bedroom, closet, and bathroom would be accessible by conventional doors from the living room area. The bathroom would have the tub, sink, and toilet in a row. The kitchen area would not be separate room, but might include an island counter. While various designs of each mini-condo may be desirable, experience in cohousing projects has shown that the more uniform the individual homes can be, the cheaper the overall project.