What is Evans Oaks
What is Evans Oaks
One of the original farm houses in this area is the Evans house, which is directly behind our property. Just to the east of the property is Evans Valley, so we felt it fitting to call the project Evans Oaks. We intended all along to save the two oak groves on the property, which we did.
An Intentional Co-Housing Community
In 2013 a group of households came together for a potluck in Silverton, Oregon. Our purpose was to enjoy the great feast that we produced from our individual homes and to also talk about an idea that had surfaced for several of us; intentional community. That was the beginning of Evans Oaks.
Since that time we incorporated as an LLC, located and purchased a beautiful piece of land, obtained enthusiastic approval from the City of Silverton for our project (including the necessary rezoning), secured financing and a local general contractor in 2019, then completed construction in the fall of 2020.
We all moved into our new homes in December of 2020. Being here during the pandemic has been a wonderful thing as we have shared a safe, helpful and healthy community together.
We meet monthly to do business but much more often than that for casual meals, parties, movie nights, work projects and other typical cohousing interactions.
Our community is lively and full of positive energy. We enjoy good food and conversations while we work on each step in the process of establishing this new home for ourselves and a model of a different way to live for Silverton.
After visiting and learning about other cohousing communities, our group chose to adopt the term, “cohousing light”. By this we mean that we want to live intentionally with each other in the typical physical layout of cohousing developments but without some of the more programmed aspects that are also typical of cohousing. We do not have an official theme for our community but if we did it would likely be sustainability/living-light-on-the-land. As with many communities like ours we choose to make our decisions through consensus and have designed our physical site and relational agreements together. Because of our small size we are able to work together in this way with great success so far.
Our community consists of 11 independent small homes (800-1400 square feet), a common house for get-togethers and guest space, and two banks of garages. Located on a 1.4 acre piece of land in the city limits, our space is ideal for the arrangement of our homes and other structures. We are in a very desirable residential neighborhood on the “east hill” side of Silverton, less than a mile from historic downtown. We have a rainwater collection system to store and water the plants and garden and hope to someday add solar power for our common buildings. The site has about 30 oak trees which were preserved as part of the landscape. We installed a pervious surface material on all our paths so the rain can percolate as naturally as possible. Generally, we balanced the best passive energy designs with reasonable costs and earth friendly materials and construction methods. All of the homes and other buildings were built simultaneously and by one contractor.
We own our homes as condominiums with individual ownership of each home and shared ownership of all the common elements. Having moved into our homes in the winter of 2020, we don’t anticipate any units being available soon but will make use of all the cohousing networks when something does become available for purchase in the future.