Who we are
What is Urban Coup?
Urban Coup is an initiative of a group of Melbournians with a shared vision of creating not just housing, but community.
Coup is not a spelling mistake. The name reflects our desire to accomplish something that is new and difficult, but worth fighting for.
In June 2022 we reached a major milestone: we moved into our new home at 24 Hope Street in Brunswick, in the inner north of Melbourne.
This is the result of a 14 year journey to create an inner urban co-housing development to accommodate members of our community.
We are thrilled and excited to finally be sharing a home, and planning our future together.
Urban Coup is a way of fostering community spirit and helping the planet. Building cohousing is our response to a culture that puts tremendous strain on natural resources, promotes urban sprawl, and erodes community spirit.
Importantly, we seek to create a replicable model of a sustainable and socially responsible form of urban design and shared living for the broader community.
See here for a short (3 min) film 'Co-housing is Community' about our hopes for our new home, made back in 2018. This project was envisioned as ‘near and tall’ i.e. close to amenities (near), and with a small land footprint (tall).
Urban Coup on Hope St is a medium-density development made up of 29 households with a mixture of 1, 2, 3 and 4 bedroom apartments. We are an integral part of Nightingale Village, although we are the only co-housing building among the six buildings.
Our building has several common spaces (both indoor and outdoor) where the community can share meals, meet, socialise and also hold a range of other activities and special events. Our building includes a large communal dining and kitchen, common laundry, rooftop, multi-purpose spaces (e.g. music room, workshop), guest rooms and a bath house (yet to be completed).
The building features energy efficiency, passive solar design, double glazing, onsite water collection and reuse. Many of us do not have cars, and the building is home to GoGet share cars and multiple bike parking areas. Our building is fully electric and fossil fuel free and includes solar power generation.
The approximate total cost of the project was AUD $20 million.
Urban Coup at 24 Hope Street (‘Near and Tall’) is fully subscribed at the moment, and we are not currently accepting new members.
However, we hope to support other groups to create new co-housing projects, either drawing on our model or other similar models. We have considerable expertise and experience to share (both successes and challenges).
In the media
See here for some links to media about our journey and our new home:
- ArchitectureAU - Nightingale Village (2023)
- Nightingale Housing - A Resident's Story (Alex and Ta) (2022)
- ABC News - Communal living is growing in Australia. Residents say it can create community and reduce cost of living (2022)
- VOA News - Everybody Needs Good Neighbors: Melbourne Moves into Community-led Housing (2018)
- Fifth Estate: Urban Coup x Nightingale promises a deep green community
- Australian Financial Review - Know your neighbours, buy cheaper apartments: co-housing is the next big thing (2016)
- The New Daily - The economies of sharing, part one: Cohousing
- Sydney Morning Herald - The Share Market (2013)