Synopses & Reviews
"Pocket Neighborhoods: Creating Small Scale Community in a Large Scale World "introduces an antidote to faceless, placeless sprawl -- small scale neighborhoods where people can easily know one another, where empty nesters and single householders with far-flung families can find friendship or a helping hand nearby, and where children can have shirt-tail aunties and uncles just beyond their front gate.
The book describes inspiring pocket neighborhoods through stories of the people who live there, as well as the progressive planners, innovative architects, pioneering developers, craftspeople and gardeners who helped create them.
Sarah Susanka, author of the best selling "Not So Big House" series, wrote the Foreword to the book, placing pocket neighborhoods within context of the contemporary trends in housing and community. Ross Chapin begins the book by outlining the shifts in the scale of community and the American Dream over several generations, leading to super-sized houses in a sea of development, then describes a solution to help restore healthy, livable communities. The first section of the book looks at historic precedents of pocket neighborhoods, from 15th century hofje almshouses in the Netherlands, to a 19th century Methodists Camp Community on Martha's Vineyard, to early 20th century Garden City models and Southern California Cottage Courtyards. The second section covers a wide range of contemporary pocket neighborhoods, including New Urban communities, affordable housing, houseboat communities, eco-neighborhoods, and Ross Chapin Architects' own pocket neighborhood examples. The third section focuses on 'cohousing' communities, from Danish origins in the 1960s, to examples across America, Australia and New Zealand, including a chapter on senior cohousing. The fourth section looks at retrofitting pocket neighborhoods within existing communities. Throughout the book are series of "Design Keys" that highlight the essential principles of pocket neighborhood planning and design, and short stories about "Pocket Neighborhood Pioneers" who blazed new trails. The book is filled with rich photographs, drawings, illustrations and site plans, and a Resources section at the end provides leads for the reader to explore the topic in further detail.
“Anyone who’s looking for a way to live both simply and beautifully will love Ross Chapin’s notions about creating community. If you’ve enjoyed the “Not So Big House” series, you’ll also love this book.” – SARAH SUSANKA, author of "The Not So Big House"
Anyone who’s looking for a way to live both simply and beautifully will love Ross Chapin’s notions about creating community. If you’ve enjoyed the “Not So Big House” series, you’ll also love this book.—SARAH SUSANKA, author of The Not So Big House
Ross Chapin possesses a Christopher Alexander-like ability to show how all the pieces of a house and a neighborhood can fit together, composing a profoundly satisfying environment.
—PHILIP LANGDON, author, A Better Place to Live: Reshaping the American Suburb, and editor of New Urban NewsThe phrase "think globally, act locally" takes on new meaning in this book, which shows what is possible when residents in close proximity share a commitment to community. "Pocket Neighborhoods" includes an extensive list of resources and organizations related to urban design and eco-friendly neighborhoods, but this is not a how-to book. It is information and inspiration, a timely discussion as regions grapple with housing density and look for ways to build a sense of community along with every new house, apartment and condo. --Jeffrey Head, LOS ANGELES TIMESThis revolutionary book will change the way North Americans view new home developments and will help home buyers realize that community is often as important as the house.—TORONTO STARAfter decades of living large — mini-mansions in sprawling subdivisions the size of cities — some Americans are retrenching and showing a new appreciation for small, cozy and neighborly. Architect Ross Chapin has coined a term for these new compact communities: pocket neighborhoods. His new book — Pocket Neighborhoods, Creating Small-Scale Community in a Large-Scale World— documents a surprisingly broad array of such developments across the USA, from urban neighborhoods to suburban and rural areas.—USA TODAYSuperb and sublime — Ross Chapin has described the future of neighborhood-making with his book, Pocket Neighborhoods.
—CHARLES DURRETT, architect, author of Cohousing: A Contemporary Approach to Housing OurselvesRoss Chapin and his development partners in the Pacific Northwest set the standards for beautifully designed and beautifully crafted cottage neighborhoods. Now comes Ross's long-awaited book explaining why and how these neighborhoods work. It's a manual for right-sizing community in America's 21st century.
—BEN BROWN, Principal, PlacemakersRoss Chapin's book, Pocket Neighborhoods, skillfully illustrates numerous success stories showing how to transform individual homes and gardens into a community. As homes get smaller, connection to the public realm has never been more important. This book is a great read for anyone looking for housing solutions that will stand the test of time.—MARIANNE CUSATO, Designer of the Katrina Cottages & The New Economy HomeRoss Chapin is a master in understanding the importance of 'scale' in creating beautiful and humane communities. His new book is a profound manual of what works to create vibrant pocket communities—essential components of a sustainable future.
—JASON F. MCLENNAN, CEO Cascadia Green Building CouncilMy own instinct is that Ross’s work is just what our culture is hungering for right now—a viable way to make life vivid, personal and deeply satisfying, and a sustainable alternative to spread-out suburban sprawl.—ROBERT WALSH, architect, educatorAfter 30 years as a building developer, I met Ross Chapin. His articulate guidance about how we live together permanently changed how I create places for people to live. With Pocket Neighborhoods, Ross shares his wisdom of how truly wonderful neighborhoods can and should be. This book has come none too soon for every one of us.
—MICHAEL MCKEEL, developerBuilding a neighborhood is about having a vision and understanding how all the pieces and layers fit together. Skipping over a key detail or two is the difference between a subdivision and a neighborhood. Ross Chapin understands these details and his Pocket Neighborhoods book will give you that understanding too.
—M. CASEY LAND, developer
Anyone who's looking for a way to live both simply and beautifully will love Ross Chapin's notions about creating community. If you've enjoyed the "Not So Big House" series, you'll also love this book.--SARAH SUSANKA, author of "The Not So Big House"Ross Chapin possesses a Christopher Alexander-like ability to show how all the pieces of a house and a neighborhood can fit together, composing a profoundly satisfying environment.
--PHILIP LANGDON, author, "A Better Place to Live: Reshaping the American Suburb," and editor of New Urban NewsThe phrase "think globally, act locally" takes on new meaning in this book, which shows what is possible when residents in close proximity share a commitment to community. "Pocket Neighborhoods" includes an extensive list of resources and organizations related to urban design and eco-friendly neighborhoods, but this is not a how-to book. It is information and inspiration, a timely discussion as regions grapple with housing density and look for ways to build a sense of community along with every new house, apartment and condo. --Jeffrey Head, LOS ANGELES TIMESThis revolutionary book will change the way North Americans view new home developments and will help home buyers realize that community is often as important as the house.--TORONTO STARAfter decades of living large -- mini-mansions in sprawling subdivisions the size of cities -- some Americans are retrenching and showing a new appreciation for small, cozy and neighborly. Architect Ross Chapin has coined a term for these new compact communities: pocket neighborhoods. His new book -- "Pocket Neighborhoods, Creating Small-Scale Community in a Large-Scale World"-- documents a surprisingly broad array of such developments across the USA, from urban neighborhoods to suburban and rural areas.--USA TODAYSuperb and sublime -- Ross Chapin has described the future of neighborhood-making with his book, "Pocket Neighborhoods."
--CHARLES DURRETT, architect, author of "Cohousing: A Conte
The typical American neighborhood is impersonal, made up of large houses on large lots, with large garages whose remote openers provide residents instant access inside. There’s never any need to see or be seen! The good news is that a growing number of homeowners are saying they want more. Pocket neighborhoods are alternative living arrangements that provide shelter and security, convenience, comfort, and meaning. In a typical pocket neighborhood, parking is intentionally separated from houses, which surround a landscaped common area. Homeowners walk to their doors, past the neighbors they might otherwise never know. This book by architect and author Ross Chapin describes existing pocket neighborhoods and co-housing communities — and provides inspiration for creating new ones.
This book by architect and author Chapin describes existing pocket neighborhoods and co-housing communities--and provides inspiration for creating new ones.
About the Author
Ross Chapin, AIA, is the principal of Ross Chapin Architects, located on Whidbey Island, north of Seattle. He has focused on "sensibly sized" custom residences, "pocket neighborhood" developments, and mixed-use projects since 1982. His partnerships with developers, city planners, and builders have created innovative housing and neighborhood prototypes that have received significant national attention and are shifting the way we think about our homes and communities. His projects have won numerous design awards, including the 2005, 2007, and 2009 AIA Housing awards, and have been published in "Architectural Record," " Builder magazine," " The New York Times," " Boston Globe," " Fine Homebuilding," "Metropolitan Home," " This Old House," " Sunset," ""and more than 25 books, including "Creating the Not So Big House," " Home By Design," " Patterns of Home," " The Good Green Home," " The New Cottage Home," ""and" Blueprint Small. "Ross lectures on housing at conferences and universities throughout the country. Visit his website at www.rosschapin.com.
Table of Contents
Contemporary Pocket Neighborhoods featured in the book:Conover Commons, Redmond, WADanielson Grove, Kirkland, WAThird Street Cottages, Langley, WAGreenwood Avenue, Shoreline, WAGroom Lane, SeattleBarrio Santa Rosa, Tucson, AZCota Street, Santa Barbara, CAVillage Homes, Davis, CAN Street, Davis, CATemescal Creek, North Oakland, CAHouseboat community, Sausalito, CABerkeley Cohousing, Berkeley, CADoyle Street, Emeryville, CASwan’s Market, Oakland, CACheesecake Consortium, northern CAPoplar neighborhood, Boulder, COSilver Sage, Boulder, COPortland, ORCambridge, MAIsland Cohousing, Martha’s Vineyard, MAElder Cohousing, Abington, VAChristie Walk, Adelaide, AUSTRALIAEarthSong, NEW ZEALAND Historic PrecedentsOak Bluffs, Martha’s Vineyard, MAForest Hills, NYSunnyside Gardens, NYRadburn, NJPine Street, SeattleBungalow Courts, southern CA
Foreword, by Sarah Susanka
Introduction: What Is a Pocket Neighborhood?
Part One Precedents: Historic Pocket Neighborhoods
Chapter 1 Setting Up Camp
Chapter 2 Gardens of Compassion
Chapter 3 Visions of Garden Cities
Chapter 4 The Bungalow Courts of California
Chapter 5 Cottage Living
Part Two Contemporary Pocket Neighborhoods
Chapter 6 A New Cottage Court
Chapter 7 A Neighborhood within a Neighborhood
Chapter 8 A Pocket Neighborhood on a Challenging Site
Chapter 9 The Neighborhood the Neighbors Built
Chapter 10 Floating Communities
Chapter 11 Lanes, Woonerfs, and Mental Speed Bumps
Chapter 12 Back House, Front House, Lane
Chapter 13 New Urban Pocket Neighborhoods
Chapter 14 Lines of Enticement
Chapter 15 Pocket Neighborhoods within a Village
Part Three CoHousing Communities
Chapter 16 Danish Origins
Chapter 17 CoHousing in America
Chapter 18 Greening the Neighborhood
Chapter 19 Saging Communities
Part Four Creating Pocket Neighborhoods in Existing Communities
Chapter 20 Infill in a First-Ring Suburb
Chapter 21 Urban Homesteads
Chapter 22 Taking Down the Fences
Chapter 23 Taking Back the Alley
Chapter 24 Taking Back the Street
Afterword: A Tapestry of Pocket Neighborhoods