How to Create a Thriving Community

Maintaining a happy and healthy community is key to its success, but it’s easier said than done. Having a dedicated Head of Community who is committed to the betterment of the community can make all the difference. In this article, we will explore the steps that Urban Campus has taken to create a thriving community.

Understand the Nature of Communities

It’s important to understand that communities can be cyclical. Not every member will be equally driven or involved. As a community operator, you may experience down times, but it’s just part of the process. Our goal is to bring together a group of strangers who share similar values and lifestyles and help them build a home together. At Urban Campus, we strive for a self-sustaining community that relies on us for support and guidance.

Effective Onboarding

At Urban Campus, we believe in creating a strong and inclusive community from the very start. Before our tenants move into their new home, our sales team takes the time to introduce them to our community during their initial interview call. They will explain our values, events, community meals, and clubs that we offer. It’s important for us to carefully curate the people who join our community to ensure that everyone has an open mindset and is willing to get involved. We understand that a vibrant community requires a mix of personalities and perspectives, both extroverts and introverts alike.

Technology at Urban Campus

At Urban Campus, we have embraced technology to enhance our community experience. Three days before moving in, new residents receive emails asking them to register for our in-house app. A few weeks later, we send out feedback forms to gain a deeper understanding of their experience.

Our app serves as a vital tool for transparency and scalability, providing a platform for both Urban Campus staff and community members to create events. Tenants can join clubs that interest them and are automatically added to group chats, encouraging them to connect with others who share similar hobbies, regardless of which building they live in. This app has become a hub for members to connect and has greatly streamlined communication and event planning. Since its introduction in September 2022, we have seen a 60% increase in club interaction.

Urban Campus Community Co-Creation Sessions

Our co-creation sessions are designed to foster open communication and gather valuable insights from our community members, known as colivers. These quarterly gatherings provide a platform for our colivers to voice their concerns, share their experiences, and offer suggestions on how we can better serve their needs.

At Urban Campus, we believe that our community is the cornerstone of our success. That’s why we encourage active participation and value their opinions in shaping the future of their living experience. Our goal is to create an environment where everyone feels heard, supported, and empowered to make positive changes.

By gathering feedback, addressing any tensions or misunderstandings, and making necessary adjustments to our spaces and processes, we strive to continuously improve and provide the best possible living experience for our colivers. We acknowledge that frustrations may arise, but together, with open and honest communication, we can overcome any challenges and create a thriving community.

Fostering Community Interests through Events

We believe in supporting and promoting the passions and interests of our community members. That’s why we make an effort to bring these projects to life and showcase them within our spaces.

For instance, Albus Burger, a company started by one of our colivers in Mellado Madrid Coliving during the pandemic, offers a unique Uruguayan recipe and brings members together for delicious meals. As a testament to our commitment to supporting our community, we are proud to announce that Albus Burger is our official burger partner. Every quarter, we host a Welcome BBQ where current and new members can enjoy their offerings and learn more about their business.

We understand that our community members have unique interests and talents, and we strive to provide opportunities for them to showcase and share these with the rest of the community. If there is a way to support and bring attention to a community member’s passion, we will do everything in our power to make it happen.

Building Strong Community Partnerships

Creating a positive impact not only within our spaces, but also in the surrounding neighborhoods is extremely important to us. Which is why we form partnerships with local businesses to enhance the value of the area and bring added benefits to our colivers.

Our focus is on supporting sustainable and local businesses, and we continually seek new and innovative ways to collaborate with them. Whether it’s through formal agreements or tailored events, our goal is to strengthen the community and promote the growth of local businesses.

By forging strong partnerships with local businesses, we aim to create a vibrant and thriving community that benefits everyone involved.

Continuous Improvement through Community Learnings

As the Head of Community at Urban Campus, I have been committed to finding ways to enhance the community experience for our colivers. One initiative I launched was the community catalyst program, from which I have gained valuable insights and lessons.

Initially, the idea was to have a designated member from each space encourage and foster community spirit for a few months. However, I soon realized that our colivers preferred not to have additional responsibilities and felt that the program added unnecessary pressure. Despite this challenge, I have learned that finding the right framework for a community catalyst role remains a work in progress.

Our community is one of the three core pillars of the company, and we are dedicated to continuously improving and adapting to meet their needs and expectations. By actively seeking feedback, refining our processes, and making necessary changes, we strive to create a happy and thriving community.

We wanted to find the best ways to give back this holiday season, as this time of year is known for bringing people together and lending a hand. With the year ending, and everything winding down, you may feel as though you have a moment to catch your breath. Many take this period to reflect on all that they have accomplished in the last twelve months, and everything they have planned for the upcoming year. You may spend it with your family, from afar, or your friends in your coliving

We believe this season has a way of making everyone a little more kind, which think is wonderful. Many shop until they drop for their loved ones, but we asked our staff to do the opposite.

Last year at Urban Campus we donated books to Libros Melior. They sell second-hand and used books, donated by individuals as well as organisations, and give them a new life in solidarity. The funds raised are used to finance projects such as delivering textbooks and school supplies to families with limited financial resources.

This year in our Paris office our team came together and donated to Emmaüs, an international solidarity charity to help out this season. They are known for fighting against social exclusion and supporting the reinsertion of people in need by finding them a job in one of their various structures. The company regularly organizes big fund-raisers and resells all the donations they receive in their vintage clothes shops and furniture stores. The donation was made just last week to ensure the kids would have it in time for the holidays.

While in Madrid, we will have worked with our Head of Community to have a box donation set up inside each of our five colivings and our coworking for those who can and would like to donate canned goods and non-perishables to Foodie Angels. Their organization specifically helps families with economic difficulties by offering them surplus food. 

So as you know, Our coliving along with our coworking community and staff are getting ready for the season and love finding ways of doing these initiatives also throughout the year. If you have any recommendations or connections of more acts like these and how we can be a part of it, we invite you to get in contact with us and let us know. 

Happy Holidays! 

As coliving and coworking in France continue to rise Nexity wrote an article stating where these social ways of living are available to those who are searching for diversity.

To view the original article in French, please click here.

Coliving, and coworking are available in the city as well as in the countryside. These new living and working spaces are developing to allow for more social and intergenerational diversity and simply to meet the aspirations of the French to live together. 

Coliving, coworking. These two Anglo-Saxon terms have been confused for a while in France, but they are making their way into the minds of people and territories where new housing and workspace formats are developing. The number of coliving spaces rose to 8,300 in 20211 from 5,000 in 2019 and the number of coworking spaces reached 2,8002 from 1,700 two years earlier. For Maxime Armand, founder of the coliving company Urban Campus, it is above all “a new way of living together in cities”.

When coliving and coworking provide the solution

“Coliving and coworking are a response to the new expectations of young, mobile, ambitious workers who are open to meeting others,” says Maxime Armand. In short, they meet the aspirations of French people looking for social interaction, budget savings, and mobility. “In Europe’s major cities, more than 50% of households are composed of a single person. Lifestyles have changed, studies are longer, we get married later, have children later…the average household size keeps decreasing over time, so there is a need for smaller housing.”

As for coworking, many companies and employees have taken the plunge. There are lower real estate costs for companies and more freedom for employees to work remotely from anywhere in the world. The Urban Campus buildings also include coworking spaces where residents and outside workers meet, leading to “great encounters.”

Diversity as an asset

Shared living and working spaces would not exist without a desire to live together beyond the purely economic advantages. This is illustrated by the success of coworking spaces created in retirement homes, where workers and residents live together on a daily basis, as in Marseille at the Ehpad Les Jardins d’Haïti, part of the “Un tiers-lieu dans mon Ehpad” program launched by the Caisse nationale de solidarité pour l’autonomie in partnership with France tiers-lieux.

If these schemes are so successful, it is also because of the mutual benefits they bring. In coliving or shared housing, older people can provide services to those who are younger, such as the option of babysitting their children, while those who are younger could return the favor and sometimes do the grocery shopping for their elders. For example, in Le Havre, a former fire station had been renovated into intermediate rental housing, housing for home ownership, mainly for young workers and families, and housing for seniors with an art gallery open to the general public. In Le Havre, they combine social diversity, generational diversity, and diversity of use, “living together and intergenerational diversity were at the heart of the project,” says Éric Vialatel, president of Maisons de Marianne.

It also works in the rural areas

Who said that coworking and coliving were only urban phenomena? The rise of telecommuting has led thousands of city dwellers to go green, at least a few days a week. Some rather rural areas have carried out important seduction campaigns or should we say “marketing” campaigns to attract new active inhabitants, from thirty to fifty years old on average. In Saint-Didier-sur-Rochefort, a little more than 400 inhabitants in the Loire, a café-workshop was created to allow the newcomers to work together and to get a taste of this new life. Moreover, the large townhouse just across the street has been transformed into a shared space and allows families to move into “test” life in the country before settling down permanently. “Leaving the city raises fears, but being with people in the same situation, to live and work, allows us to overcome them together,” says Olivier, a former engineer in Grenoble who has been converted into the manager of these spaces.

In the city as well as in the country, coliving, and coworking, along with other formats of shared spaces are at the same time an economical solution to reduce the expenses of the occupants, an ecological solution to reinforce the intensity of use of the buildings. It is a great opportunity to rediscover the taste of life together, after all, man is a social animal.

1. Prospective study Coliving in France, a market that is accelerating; BNP Paribas Real Estate – December 20, 2021
2. Study: The coworking index; Ubiq – November 17, 2021


TaxDown tax return specialists

It’s that time of year, time to do your tax returns.

In Spain, this process can be difficult, long and time consuming for a lot of people. Other than that, a lot of people might be doing the process incorrectly, especially young or inexperienced people who have never done their tax returns before. This also creates a real fear and concern of having to pay back money to the tax authorities.

TaxDown is here to help. They not only provide an easy-to-use digital tool & expert support to taxpayers who need to do their tax returns, but they also make sure you get your tax returns done fast and efficiently, and of course, with the most savings.

TaxDown arrived back in November at our Urban Campus Jerónimo Coworking in the centre of Madrid and set up a shop. Since then, their team hasn’t stopped growing and have already become important and active members of our community.

We sat down with them to get to know the full story behind this thriving startup and hear their plans for the future.

Keep reading to discover TaxDown!


What is TaxDown and what do you do?

TaxDown is a start-up that helps people do their tax returns process in a simple and comfortable way, always striving to get the best possible outcome for each individual case.

How was TaxDown created?

Leaving their high-level tech jobs behind in San Francisco, three passionate entrepreneurs, Joaquín Fernández, Álvaro Falcones & Enrique García, came together through their love of technology, and passion for challenging the way we currently do things. 

They did not hesitate to leave their past jobs at a consultancy in San Francisco, top-level tech start-ups management in Spain and innovation in giant tech companies. They sacrificed this to create a project that would improve the lives of people and solve a real problem in the short term.

Two and half years later, the TaxDown team has made advice on filing your taxes accessible to people all around Spain. “We have built a digital alternative that allows taxpayers to easily file their tax returns, assuring the highest savings.”

Who is your target audience?

Everyone. Our mission is to solve the tax nuisances with a platform that allows users to manage them in an easy manner, offering them the best possible solution. Our vision is to help people, by empowering them with technology so that they can make the best decisions.


Which are your values and company values?

We are taxers; we like to celebrate achievements intensely, truly living with passion for what we do. we prefer smiles, inside jokes in the office, and ‘buenrollismo’ (good vibes). 

Our ambition is to change the world. We believe in ourselves, but most importantly, we believe in people, in finding hidden talents to help them achieve their highest potential and everything that makes each of us go slightly crazy.


Why did you choose Urban Campus Jerónimo Coworking?

We chose Urban Campus because they offered us a flexible and comfortable place to work, but mainly because of its reliability. Furthermore, we chose this coworking because of its magnificent location, in the heart of Madrid.


What opportunities do you think a Coworking space can offer that a traditional office can’t? 

Having a positive environment to exchange ideas and, above all, the fact that the main goal of these spaces is COLLABORATION. You get to collaborate with people who are not only part of your company but also anyone who is focused on another sector and may bring a fresh eye and expertise to any problem one might have. 


Where do you see TaxDown in 5 years time?

We see TaxDown helping people with their tax returns which truly is a big problem for many. We would also like to broaden our services and take the leap into international borders, establishing a TaxDown presence all over the world.. We’re sure that through our hard work and dedication we’ll be able to achieve this. 


Want to know more about TaxDown? 

Don’t wait for another second to find out more about how they can help you with those dreaded tax returns. ( www.taxdown.es/ ) 

If you are looking for a place to work and want to meet a fantastic community of professionals and top-notch companies, come visit our Urban Campus Jerónimo Coworking and discover our private offices, Open Space and flexible conditions.