A start up in downtown Syracuse New York is creating a new real estate trend, where residents have their own micro unit built around a shared common living area for eating, cooking and socializing. These units will be built on the top two floors of an existing office with a co-working space. Although co-working is a familiar concept at this point, this new real estate trend will take communal living to a new level with accompanying dorm space for living.
The developer envisions this space as a dorm for Millennials, and will feature 21 micro units, each consisting of a tiny kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and living space in 300 square feet. The micro units surround a common living area that will include a chef’s kitchen, game room and media room.
The developer Troy Evans hopes to “combine an affordable apartment with this community style of living, rather than living by yourself in a one bedroom in the suburbs.” Evans plans to recruit applicants online and select individuals who would fit into this communal style living. He plans to have weekly meetings and activities for the residents of these units. The apartments will come fully furnished to appeal to individuals just starting out, and will also have one unit advertised through Airbnb. The developer Evans plans to keep the rent slightly below the market rate for one bedroom apartments in downtown Syracuse.
Evans may be entering the market at the perfect time since Millennials are staying single longer than previous generations, yet are notoriously social having been raised on the internet with access to constant communication with others. More 25 to 34 year olds are living with roommates than ever before, partly due to the economy with stagnant wages, student loan debt and high rental prices.
This real estate trend in co-working and living spaces are cropping up in other places, such as New York City, Boston, and Washington DC. Pure House in New York City is an apartment building that also creates a networking and social community for its residents. Krash, a startup in Boston, invites entrepreneurs to live and work in a shared space for three to 12 months in Boston, New York or Washington DC, to help jumpstart their connections. WeWork, a massive co-working space in New York plans to move into shared living spaces.
Evans hopes that his new model of living, which combines shared work space and micro units, will help revitalize the downtown in Syracuse, and stop the influx of movement to the suburbs by the younger generation. “We’re trying to make it a neighborhood in a building,” he said. “You’re not staying in your room watching TV all day, you’re eating in the restaurants, going to the coffee shops and the bars, and doing it as a group.”
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