Senior co-ops: The new housing rage

Real estate trend spreads from Midwestern states
Published on Sep 9, 2005

In the United States, trends generally start on the East or West Coast and move inward. But once in a while the reverse happens – the innovation begins in the Midwest and ripples outwards. One such example is senior co-operatives – otherwise known as "senior co-ops." This modestly sized, low-rise, multifamily housing that began in Minneapolis about 30 years ago is still largely a Minnesota phenomenon, but they are slowly spreading to other Midwestern states as well as further a field in Texas, Arkansas, and even Alaska. Senior co-op residents rave about them. Of greater interest to this columnist, senior co-ops seem tailor-made for aging baby boomers who famously want to do things their way, be in control, flout tradition, confound expectation, and never grow old. This was my conclusion after touring a number of projects in the Minneapolis area at the invitation of Miller Hanson Partners, a Minneapolis architectural firm that has designed more senior co-ops than any othe...