Bread and Roses Roomates Co-own Their Low-Income Housing

The old Victorian home at 162 Cambridge St. doesn’t stand out at first glance. The screened-in porch is decked with a few old chairs, a garden takes the place of a front lawn and the garage is painted with a rainbow of colors — nothing out of place in the progressive Westcott Street neighborhood.

The only indication that this isn’t your average single-family home comes from a small sign on the front door, which reads “Bread and Roses Collective.”

Bread and Roses is home to seven roommates who don’t pay rent to a landlord; every member of the collective is a co-owner of the house. They buy all their food and cook together. They pool money to lower the cost of utilities. They share nearly everything: furniture, dishes and responsibilities.

And with their newly-built second house on Westcott, just beyond the old home’s backyard, Bread and Roses is helping to share the idea of cooperative and collective living and throughout Syracuse.

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