Today I attended the presentation webinar of the new cooperative by Community Land Trust Brussels. In 2019 Edgeryders had been involved in the design meeting leading to its launch (thread).
The new cooperative should have launched in March 2020, but was overwhelmed by COVID. It was finally started later in the same year, and it now exists. It does not have a name yet, (“Common Ground” apparently is claimed by a litigious company.
The cooperative is essentially a AIS (Agence Immobilière Sociale). As I understand it, it tried to serve people who want to rent or buy reasonably priced housing (or non-residential social spaces) in Brussels, by conveying the rent they pay into a financial mechanism made of own cooperative resources (from cooperators + citizen loans + banking loans). This mechanism buys land that is then forever subtracted to the real estate market. The buildings on that land, on the other hand, are still sellable. This is the CLTB method, of course, but applied – in theory – to a broader spectrum of usages than social housing.
In practice, the first three projects in Brussels are all on CLTB land. Practically all the emphasis is on social housing. The webinar did not really mention “green” at all, the need for affordable housing is much more urgent. My personal impression is that there is little that The Reef can do with them. Recommendation: disengage.
To become members, there is a form here