Compact, Attractive Cottages Transform Pocket Neighborhoods
Into Viable Communities 

Pocket neighborhood cottages
Conover Commons photo courtesy of The Cottage Company
Small Cottage in pocket neighborhood
Conover Commons courtesy of The Cottage Company
Pocket neighorhood community cottages
Danielson Grove photo courtesy The Cottage Company

Over the past ten years or so, a new concept in cottage living has been quietly evolving in and around the Seattle area.  Two men, one a noted architect who believes in the value and scale of small houses and the other, a developer willing to gamble on something out of the norm, have successfully developed and marketed a series of compact residential clusters, each consisting of a few Craftsman-style cottages ranging in size from 800 to 1500 square feet. chapin cottage LR

The designs themselves were the inspiration of Ross Chapin, an architect who believes that the vitality of a community depends upon more than just the size of the houses in it,  Working with Jim Soules, a Seattle developer, the two have embarked on creating  viable, and sold-out, communities of pocket neighborhoods…a term referring to their practice of using small parcels of  boutique-sized tracts in existing neighborhoods and squeezing a dozen or so dwellings around grassy commons and green spaces.

In some ways, these homes are a reflection of the courtyard bungalows that were built in some Seattle neighborhoods of the 1920s, prior to the advent of the suburban family tract housing that has prevailed in American’s housing since post World War II.

chapin cottage DRToday, developers around the country are recognizing the value that some buyers place on smaller housing and are adapting Chapin’s designs for projects in other cities.  And some cities are revising their zoning codes to permit a higher density, so as to make such developments economically feasible. 





 All photos courtesy of The Cottage Company


More about these cottages and pocket neighborhoodschapin cottages

The Cottage Company

Ross Chapin Company

Tiny House Blog

Seattle Times article


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at Conover Commons

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