The Cooperative Lifestyle

Downtown Asheville, NC near Hanger Hall.  http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e3/Downstreet_in_Asheville,_NC_IMG_5202.JPG
Downtown Asheville, NC near Hanger Hall.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e3/Downstreet_in_Asheville,_NC_IMG_5202.JPG

In a city like Fort Collins where there is the ever-present U+2 policy it can be hard to imagine living in a single house easily with upwards of 12 people. However, that is the everyday environment for Hanger Hall, a cooperative house in Asheville, N.C.

Howard Hanger originally bought the old mansion in the fall of 1973 after his divorce. Hanger immediately fell in love with the old house, built in 1890, but she needed some work.

“The roof looked like a moonscape with craters everywhere, and the plaster walls and ceilings had all come down,” Hanger told Asheville’s Citizen Times. “Every room was piled with debris — in no room could you see the actual floor — and nothing was up to code.”

Hanger and the many temporary and long term residents of the house worked to fix it up over the years. While he did not intend to start a housing cooperative, the old mansion manifested into one since it was purchased 40 years ago.

“People ask us if we are an ‘intentional community,’ that is, do we have some mission statement or goal,” Hanger told the Citizen Times. “I answer that we are an intentional community. Our intention is to cooperate. And to have as much fun as possible. Which we do.”

To read more about Hanger Hall’s 40th anniversary click here.

To read more information about the hall’s history and the Asheville area click here.