1) What is your project about? How does it work? When did you start it and why?
Ad-Hoc is a platform initiated in 2014 by a small group of people who have long been thinking about living differently; living together. The main goal of Ad-Hoc is to found the very first housing cooperative in Luxembourg and to become the main contact in Luxembourg for questions on housing cooperatives and participative housing. A housing cooperative combines the two existing housing models, ownership and renting, and aims at providing affordable housing to the members of the cooperative.
2) Why is it important to you to do it in a collective way?
In a housing cooperative the question of how to live together precedes that of how to carry out the construction. The future inhabitants engage in the process of construction of their living space by participating, in a collective and democratic way, at all stages of the realization of the building and/or the neighborhood who will host their housing: They define their personal project of housing as well as the spaces to share with their neighbors and are involved in all the choices regarding the design, implementation and management of the building.
The idea is to integrate the environmental requirements and encourage the development of tools to limit the costs of construction by the pooling of spaces and services.
Living in a housing cooperative encourages the development of new social links, exchanges and the solidarity between neighbors. The neighborhood relations are not left to chance. Democratic participation in joint decisions encourages a real cooperation in the neighborhood. The common spaces allow you to mutualize the services and promote conviviality and solidarity between neighbors.
3) Was it hard to get out of your “individual” shells at first? Something to get used to?
We are still at the starting point of getting rid of these ‘individual’ shells, which is one of the toughest challenges that we need to tackle in order to become a group/collective/community.
With 70% of the residents in Luxembourg owning their housing, it is hard to make people understand that they will only co-own one part of the building that is going to be built.
Furthermore, the project won’t work if the members do not get out of their comfort zone and actively take part in managing the cooperative and get involved in the community building process.