Building a Co-operative Community in Public Housing: The Case of the Atkinson Housing Co-operative
Published: July 2013© 2013
Imprint: University of Toronto Press
Page Count: 272 Pages
Illustrations: 5 figures, 1 map
Dimensions: 6.05 x 9.03
272 Pages, 6.05 x 9.03 x 0.66 in, 5 figures, 1 map
Public housing projects were the original form of government supported housing for low-income residents. Over the last fifty years many projects have struggled with high crime rates and numerous social problems. One solution proposed to address these ongoing issues is granting residents decision-making power within their community by converting into a co-operative. Building a Co-operative Community in Public Housing follows the journey of a Toronto public housing complex as it was converted into a resident-operated co-operative, a first in Canada.
Jorge Sousa traces the story of Alexandra Park, which became the Atkinson Housing Co-operative in 2003 after a ten-year conversion process. Sousa, who himself was raised in the community, provides an empirical account of the contributing factors that influenced its decision to pursue community-based control, as well as the experiences of both residents and government officials engaged in this process. Finally, Building a Co-operative Community in Public Housing offers a framework for other communities facing similar circumstances who want to learn how to go about undertaking this process.
All royalties from this book will be contributed to the Co-operative Housing Federation of Toronto Charitable Fund.
Chapter 1 Canadian Public Housing Policy and Programs
Chapter 2 Constructing a Theoretical Lens to Understand the Conversion Experiment
Chapter 3 Exploring the Reasons for Transforming the Alexandra Park Housing Project
Chapter 5 Theoretical Analysis of the Atkinson Conversion Process
Chapter 6 Extending the Conversion Experiment Beyond the Atkinson Housing Co-operative
Updated Status of the Atkinson Housing Co-operative
Leadership and Participation
Barriers to Building Capacity and Enhancing Community Development
Images of the Community
Methodology and Research Design
“Building a Co-operative Community in Public Housing conveys experiences that should be of interest to a wide readership of activists, policy workers, and scholars. Jorge Sousa has accepted a major challenge in reporting in detail on a complex and extended process, and his study is clearly driven by his commitment and depth of knowledge. His book’s concern with strategies for improving the conditions of people living in public housing, as well as its focus on community development, will attract readers from Europe, North America, Australasia, and beyond.”
Ian Skelton, Department of City Planning, University of Manitoba