Welcome To Our Site

We are a cohousing community in the heart of the island of Martha's Vineyard. Island Cohousing is an ongoing experiment in collaborative living and a community of people who like to share our story.

Here there are a brief history and a list of our guiding principles. You can also find information about the design of Island Cohousing and a collection of documents, including our bylaws, covenants and development plans and budget.

We hope the information about us and our community will be useful to you. Please feel free to borrow liberally from the information and documents. Please contact us if you have any questions or would like to get in touch.

Community Design


Modeled on a Danish housing concept developed in the 1970s, the sixteen homes at Island Cohousing (ICoho) are tightly clustered in a manner that encourages social interaction, provides a safe and supportive environment for children, and maximizes open space: 85% of the land is undeveloped in perpetuity.
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News: Pastured Poultry


Island Cohousing has taken the leap. With our new chicken tractor and (45 or so) chickens we're now farmers. The first group of birds were Fedex-ed here in early May and kept warm in three Cohousing homes for around 3 weeks before moving into their new home in the field.

We have borrowed from several sources to create our first prototype chicken tractor. So far, although we've captured a raccoon nearby we've not lost one chicken to predators. It's a little heavy for one person to lift and walk the 8 feet or so, but not bad for a first try. Read more >

Living Here


This is the integrated verbal expression of how the physical community at Island Cohousing was designed and is intended to serve as a set of guidelines for how the Community changes over time. The idea is to, as much as possible, to stick to these concepts - not slavishly, but intentionally, so that if we change any of these concepts we can understand that we are doing so and the effects of the change(s).
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About Us


Creating a Neighborhood

Island Cohousing is a neighborhood of 16 houses and a collection of shared common facilities located on a 30-acre woodland site in West Tisbury, on the island of Martha’s Vineyard. It began in 1996 when John Abrams, president of South Mountain Company, a local design/build and development company, set to work with a core group of Islanders excited by the prospect of community living, affordable year round housing, and environmental responsibility. Read more >