Interesting Model for more Affordable Housing: Co-living
Treehouse, a Los Angeles-based startup, has broken ground on what is billed as the nation’s first ground-up co-living community in Hollywood.
The project, which officially began construction in late 2017, is located one block south of Hollywood Boulevard at 5842 Carlton Way. The low-rise structure, slated for completion in 2019, will include 18 total units – two of which would be set aside as affordable housing – and 60 total bedrooms. Exterior and interior designs are by Soler Architecture + Design and Knibb Design.
Recent years have seen a handful of co-living buildings open in cities such as New York, San Francisco, and Washington D.C., all of which repurposed existing structures. And while the entities behind those projects have taken an “asset-light, management-only approach,” Treehouse has a different model in mind.
“Co-living is about bringing people together. Over the last 70 years we’ve increasingly isolated ourselves from anyone but our immediate family,” said Treehouse CEO and co-founder Prophet Walker. “The rise of suburbia, of exurbia, all the time Americans spend in our cars – I don’t think it’s a coincidence that we’re lonely, that we’re angry. That’s what we’re going to change.”
“By building ground up and developing as well as managing, we can create a building which is far more specifically designed to facilitate a strong community. The constraints of converting existing buildings and the traditionalism of existing apartment owners has thus far created co-living buildings which look an awful lot like typical apartments with additional services provided on top – we’re excited to be creating something new,” said Brent Gaisford, Treehouse’s COO and co-founder.
Treehouse residents will each receive a fully-furnished bedroom with a private bathroom, with access to shared spaces such as a kitchen and living area with suitemates, and 7,000 square feet of building-wide amenities for all residents. This includes a chef’s kitchen and dining space that will host weekly Sunday dinners and Saturday brunches. Other features include a free café for residents, a gym, and a two-story co-working library
“Everything we do is focused around creating a community. Unlike some of the other co-living offerings, we’re using minimum 12-month leases. And we’re also able to offer more affordable rents than recently built studios or one-bedroom apartments in the Hollywood area,” said Gaisford.
The project has attracted the support of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, “Treehouse’s creative approach will help more young people set down roots and start building a future in our city,” said Garcetti in a prepared statement. “L.A.’s housing shortage demands that we stay open to new ideas for meeting Angelenos’ needs at every stage of their lives.”