Tishman Speyer, Common Team Up on Housing Brand for Families

Scheduled for a May launch at a community in Long Island City, N.Y., the new concept will use technology to offer services and resources for parents, as well as family-friendly designs and amenities.
Jackson Park overview

Jackson Park, a three-building, 1,800-unit luxury multifamily development in Long Island City, N.Y., will become the site of the first Kin-branded community from Tishman Speyer and Common. Kin will feature custom-designed shared spaces with technology-enabled family programming and events, on-demand childcare and other resources aimed at helping families raise their children in a cooperative environment.

The mixed-use development, which fills an entire city block along Queens Plaza South and Jackson Avenue, has three residential towers of 42, 44 and 53 stories that offer panoramic views of Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. Built by Tishman Speyer, the towers topped out in January 2017 and began leasing in the fall of that year. The entire Jackson Park development will be available for residents who wish to join, said Britt Zaffir, Kin general manager.

“Current Jackson Park residents can choose to opt into the Kin community at no cost to them. Any new renters who move in after May will pay a small monthly fee for access to Kin,” Zaffir told Multi-Housing News. “What’s great about the building is so many families currently live there already, and the building amenities include two indoor playspaces and an outdoor playground, so it’s the perfect place to build, test and iterate Kin services.”

Jackson Park yoga studio

Tishman Speyer and Common, the nation’s leading community-focused residential brand that also offers co-living arrangements in several markets in the United States, are officially launching Kin in May. The concept combines Tishman Speyer’s leading mixed-use development platform with Common’s hands-on approach to end-to-end technology-enabled property management that will be tailor-made for families living in and near cities. The brand has a pipeline across the country and plans to announce a second Kin location in the next few months.

“We are focused on meeting the needs of America’s rapidly changing cities and the people who live in them,” Rob Speyer, CEO & president of Tishman Speyer, said in a prepared statement. “Kin is a natural extension of our ongoing efforts to ensure people can access the lifestyle they crave in and around our nation’s urban centers. We partnered with Common to create this new model for young people who prefer to stay in cities and want community support, amenities and tech infrastructure to help them navigate the demands of parenting.”

Addressing Family Concerns

In a national survey of city-dwelling families, Tishman Speyer and Common found the cost of childcare and sense of community were top concerns. More than half of the respondents said their family support systems were often far away, with less than 15 percent using grandparents and relatives as their primary source of childcare. The survey found many were eager for shared experiences where they live and seeking opportunities to bring families together.

“As a parent of two young children in New York City, I know the challenges firsthand and how truly isolating it can feel. Parenting should be a community experience, and we wanted to create a place where families can make connections with people going through the same problems, experiences and joys,” Brad Hargreaves, founder & CEO of Common, said in prepared remarks. “We identified a real need for families living in cities, which became a natural progression for Common as our coliving members get older and start families”

Launched in 2015, Common operates coliving and traditional apartment buildings in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco Bay Area, Seattle and Washington, D.C. It has 24 buildings and more than 730 members.

Through the Kin app, families will be able to arrange on-demand childcare services, network with other building members and have access to family-oriented programs and services like swimming lessons, holiday parties and cooking classes. Families will be able to share resources including nannies, toys and in-unit cleaning services.

Zaffir said Kin will be working with third-party childcare providers who will fully vet and background check each nanny or babysitter. The firm will also be bringing in experts and advisors in the communities and also on the development side to help Kin shape its offerings.

“Over the next few months, we’re going to announce the location of new, purpose-built Kin homes in a few different major cities that will be designed, leased and managed by Kin with families in mind. This includes features like stroller parking, child-fitted closets, in-apartment soundproofing, community spaces specific to kids of all ages, pre-baby proofing and more,” Zaffir told MHN.

Images courtesy of Jackson Park