Mini Living, car maker BMW’s initiative long-term research project aimed at supporting innovative design for cities, is partnering with Chinese developer Nova Property Investment to convert an old industrial complex in Shanghai’s Jing’An area to a co-living location comprising apartments, along with working and cultural/leisure spaces. The work is slated to begin before the year-end.
The cluster of six buildings, formerly a paint factory, will be become a home for singles, sharers and families on short-, medium-term and extended tenancies, with the spaces designed to offer ‘an extremely high quality of life within an extremely small area’.
“Back in 1959 the classic Mini was already maximising the experience available within a very small footprint,” says Peter Schwarzenbauer, head of customer experience and digital business innovation at BMW Group. “Mini Living brings this know-how from the vehicles we drive into the places where we live. We are rethinking the idea of living space in the city and developing attractive, need-oriented living concepts.”
The project will also boast digitally accessible services, with residents able to make restaurant reservations, book room cleaning and service, order food and rent mobility options.
“Generously sized lobbies provide an excellent place to just hang out, while exhibition areas and a food market invite a closer look,” the automaker says. “The available facilities also include gardens, play areas, shops and restaurants, which people living elsewhere in Shanghai will be welcome to access too.”
In New York, Mini has turned a former Brooklyn warehouse into a new design centre. A/D/O is also home to Urban-X, a start-up accelerator launched together with VC outfit SOSV, which is looking to ‘engineer the city as a service’.