Community Building Co-op


The Community Building Co-op

692 King St. West, Kingston, Ontario, Canada

The Community Building Co-operative Ltd. is a share capital co-operative which offers an exciting model of community-based ethical investment.  We have raised capital from 35 community members to purchase and develop the commercial building that was previously the home of Portsmouth Hardware at 692 King St. West, Kingston, Ontario.  The building has been developed to include 2 residential and 3 commercial units.

Portsmouth Hardware Building, Portsmouth Village, Kingston

Portsmouth Hardware Building

Community Building Co-op, King Street West, Kingston

Community Building Co-op, King Street, Front View

The Community Building Co-op officially took ownership of the building in May 2012, while acting as the lead "constructor" on the site since March 2012.  With the building completed in late 2012 the second story now boasts two deluxe residential units on top of the existing one-story 3000 sq ft building.  The former hardware store has been partitioned into two separate commercial units, and the whole exterior is refinished in plaster and stone.  We are delighted to have our apartments occupied by our first tenants, and we welcome Anywn Yarn to the building at the brand new 105 Mowat Ave location.

Our Values

  • Co-operation: between co-op members, the broader communities of Portsmouth Village and the Kingston region, and others seeking support or partnership.
  • Democratic control: of planning, policies and decision-making by the Board of Directors as elected by the membership under the co-operative principle of one member, one vote.
  • Sustainability: environmental, economic, social and cultural, with a focus on supporting a sustainable local food system by providing affordable retail space.
  • Financial Priorities and Prudence: are central to all decision-making.  The priorities are:  1) repayment of mortgage debt; 2) the creation and maintenance of reserve fund; 3) the payment of dividends to investors; 4) sustainable local food and food justice grant funding; 5) purchasing additional buildings. 
  • Social Justice: for all in our community.  Once established, surpluses will go towards local sustainable food and food justice projects, and perhaps residential and or other commercial units can be rented more affordably to individuals, social enterprises and not-for-profits.
  • Simplicity and Transparency: in governance, operations and financial dealings.  Our business model is quite simple and we will try to ensure all appropriate information and financial data is openly accessible to members, clients, and the general public through our website.
  • Open and Voluntary Membership: available to all persons, without gender, social, racial, political or religious discrimination, interested in the services provided and willing to commit to the vision, values and responsibilities of membership.