It’s notoriously hard to meet people in Las Vegas. We’re a transient city full of walled communities and single-driver cars. Despite all that, newcomer Aaron Krolikowski easily found his tribe. This summer, the nonprofit consultant moved into the newly formed D-Well, an experiment in communal living that began in Seoul, South Korea.
Sponsored by Downtown Project and Communitas America, D-Well unites “changemakers” from a variety of fields to live together in a portion of Downtown’s 211 Apartments. Potential residents are chosen not according to their age or profession but their “dedication to resolve complex social problems with innovative ideas.” Once chosen, they receive a $200 a month subsidy from Communitas America. For a year, they will live in private, furnished micro-studios and share communal living areas. The setup encourages communication, social support, friendship and collaboration.
“If I’d rented an apartment in Summerlin, [I don’t know] if I’d ever have crossed paths with these individuals,” Krolikowski says. His fellow residents include a graphic designer and musician, an actor/director/playwright, a yoga instructor and an attorney who focuses on consumer issues. “I get incredible ideas for my own work from conversations with them,” Krolikowski adds.
“What distinguishes us is our social mission,” D-Well Community Manager Alison Yanez-McKay says. “We’re looking for people who have a stake in the community, love their city and want to make an impact.”
Yanez-McKay curates events and activities for D-Well, from cooking together in the large shared kitchen to visits to UNLV’s Barrick Museum to volunteering at the Catholic Charities Food Pantry. “I’m able to expose them to the different issues that plague our city and show them how to combat something,” she says. “It’s all about creating a positive impact in the city.”
At press time, five spots remained. Find out more at d-well.vegas.