The Collective Old Oak – The World’s Largest Co-Living Building Revealed

The world’s largest co-living block is about to open, and, according to the company behind the development, it will have so many services you won’t need to leave the building. Over the last few years we’ve seen a significant increase in the number of shared-living projects, but none quite on this scale.


Shared Housing - The Collective Old Oak - London - Common Room - Humble Homes

The development, titled The Collective Old Oak, is located in London and contains 550 bedrooms, making it twice as large as the recent WeWork project in New York. Residents will be able to avail of serviced rooms and shared lounges, kitchens and bathrooms.


Shared Housing - The Collective Old Oak - London - Common Room 2 - Humble Homes

The aim with co-living is to provide people with a convenient and sociable living environment. With a workspace, restaurant, gym, cinema, spa and launderette all integrated within the building, it is without a doubt very convenient, so much so that Reza Marchant, CEO of the company behind the project, states: “In theory you wouldn’t have to leave the building if you didn’t want to, because you have everything at your fingertips”.


Shared Housing - The Collective Old Oak - London - Library - Humble Homes

The Collective Old Oak is a cross between student housing and hotels, and is aimed at young professionals aged between 21 and 35. Rent starts at £225 per week (bear in mind this is London, where rent is sky high). This figure covers the utility bills, council tax, wifi, a concierge, cleaning, security, and linen changes.

Shared Housing - The Collective Old Oak - London - Kitchen 1 - Humble Homes

Generally, the space is divided up into what they’re calling “twodios” – two en-suite bedrooms that share a kitchenette. Each floor also has its own communal living space, and a larger kitchen/dining area that’s shared with anywhere between 30 and 70 residents.

Shared Housing - The Collective Old Oak - London - Kitchen 2 - Humble Homes

There’ll also be plenty of opportunities to socialize – three full-time community managers are on board to curate a programme of events that will take place within the communal parts of the building.

Shared Housing - The Collective Old Oak - London - Bedroom - Humble Homes

According to Reza, this shift in lifestyle is being driven by a desire to settle down later in life: “People nowadays don’t like to commit. Ultimately experiences are what people value above material possessions and co-living really embodies that. Buying a house is obviously for a lot of people still an aspiration but it’s becoming less so with our generation. Having a mortgage is a big commitment.”

For more spaces check out this living room pod that’s been used by Peter Berkowitz to minimize rent in San Francisco’s Bay area. Or, this Belgium home’s smart space-saving bedroom solution. See all spaces.

Via Dezeen
Photos: The Collective

Niall Burke

Structural engineer by day, tiny house designer by night. Niall has a keen interest in small spaces, green design, and sustainability. He started developing Humble Homes while studying for his masters degree in engineering. He is the founder and managing editor of Humble Homes.

  1. A shared kitchen means that when I wish to cook a real meal as opposed to heating something up in a microwave, I will have to carry all my ingredients to the shared kitchen. Then when cooking and servicing is complete, I can wash up and carry everything back to my bedroom?

    OK, how does a shared bathroom work?? schedule? clean up of shower floor since I do not want someones foot fungus.

    good thoery, poor plan, IMHO

  2. Anyone who has lived in a suite-style dorm will be very familiar with any adjustments you have to make for sharing main living quarters. It’s the same: you have an ensuite kitchenette and sitting area; and shared bathrooms, kitchen/dining areas, TV room, etc. Just keep your toiletries in a travel bag. You can cook in your private kitchenette for yourself, and use the main kitchen when serving guests. Scheduling is easy. If you’re unsure what it’s like, ask your local college if you can visit one of their suite-style dorms. You will have much more privacy than it sounds like in this article (your bedroom doesn’t really open into the main hallway, but opens into the ensuite sitting area), and you can use the communal areas when you don’t feel like being alone. This is a wonderful idea for career-focused renters.

  3. Totally agree Katrina. For those of us who are not beer swilling Uni students this would be a major turn off. And there would ALWAYS be one person who would swipe YOUR food, or dishwashing liquid etc.