Inside WeWork’s Wall Street housing community
SAN FRANCISCO—It’s been a year and a half since August Urbish first stepped into the lobby of the WeWork Cos. housing community on Wall Street, and he says the experience has completely changed him.
His fully furnished apartment is located five floors above WeWork’s shared office spaces in a section called WeLive. In the common areas, Urbish and hundreds of other residents can cook dinner in an expansive kitchen, shoot pool in the laundry room or get neighbourly over free WeWork-provided cocktails on the seventh-floor roof terrace.
Since starting his “We” life, Urbish quit his job at a Manhattan art gallery to develop a Twitter-like app for sharing jokes. The 34-year-old has increased the number of friends he would invite to his future wedding, if he ever gets married, to more than 40 from seven.
Although he doesn’t immediately advertise it, Urbish is such a model citizen that WeWork cuts him a discount on his rent to be an official ambassador for WeLive, a nascent business within one of the world’s most valuable technology startups.
“It’s done wonders for my confidence,” Urbish says. “I’ve already kind of forgotten how it was to live not at a WeLive.”
WeWork was founded in 2010 by a pair of American and Israeli entrepreneurs who grew up on communes on opposite sides of the world. They began by leasing office space and renting desks to New York’s creative set.