Do coworking spaces work in the suburbs?

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

···

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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twb
member, Workantile
@twbrandt

Food for thought: there are plenty of coworking spaces in CBDs that don’t work out, either. I think it’s inaccurate to say that Coworking spaces in suburbs cannot be successful, and that investor sounds like the wrong kind if investor to begin with.

With that said, “suburban” Coworking has a different set of challenges in terms of communicating value. Many people have (and often enjoy) their home offices. I see Coworking in suburban and rural areas as serving more of the “community center of the 21st century” model, more akin to libraries and churches purpose of bringing disconnected people together (just with a more business or creative bend).

As with Coworking ANYWHERE, though, the signal isn’t what an investor thinks, it’s if you can build a community before taking on the burdens of a space at all. If you can get a dozen core community members who want this to happen as much as (or more than) you do, you have everything you need to start a great Coworking community. The space follows, with or without a single investor’s support.

-Alex

···

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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twb
member, Workantile
@twbrandt

That’s not true at all. We have some great spaces outside of the greater Seattle area. The White Board is all the way out in Issaquah and Suite 133 down in Tacoma has been around for as long as Office Nomads has been. We grew up together!

http://thewhiteboard.biz

http://www.suite133.com

···

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation

http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:07 AM, Tom Brandt [email protected] wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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@twbrandt


twb
member, Workantile

Also, I had a conversation with Audrey when she was setting up The White Board out in Issaquah about this and I told her that being out in the sticks has it’s advantages over the city. The real value with coworking is combatting isolation and people living in the burbs often feel isolated. Connecting on that level is key. I suggested finding communities of people that moved to the area with a spouse. If you moved to Issaquah because your wife got a job at Microsoft and you are trying to work from home, you know isolation.

···

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation
http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:19 AM, Jacob Sayles [email protected] wrote:

That’s not true at all. We have some great spaces outside of the greater Seattle area. The White Board is all the way out in Issaquah and Suite 133 down in Tacoma has been around for as long as Office Nomads has been. We grew up together!

http://thewhiteboard.biz

http://www.suite133.com

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation

http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:07 AM, Tom Brandt [email protected] wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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@twbrandt


twb
member, Workantile

[email protected] is in Tarrytown, NY, population 12,000 and just closed out our second year with over 50 members and many a la carte users for desk time, conference room bookings and event space rental. Susan- feel free to email or call me to talk details and strategy for the suburban model!

Jenifer

···

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation

http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:07 AM, Tom Brandt [email protected] wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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@twbrandt


twb
member, Workantile

I don’t think the main issue is position, but population density.

We have developed coSfera, a coworking space in Córdoba (300000 in. city) in a residencial area with low density where nobody lives in the nearby, because of the population density. We are 38 members in a year, but we are opening a second space in the CBD area an there are people in the waiting list once we open there.

So, it’s not only about situation but also about population density.

Greetings!

···

El lunes, 15 de julio de 2013 18:35:21 UTC+2, Jenifer Ross escribió:

[email protected] is in Tarrytown, NY, population 12,000 and just closed out our second year with over 50 members and many a la carte users for desk time, conference room bookings and event space rental. Susan- feel free to email or call me to talk details and strategy for the suburban model!

Jenifer

Sent from my iPhone

On Jul 15, 2013, at 12:19 PM, Jacob Sayles [email protected] wrote:

That’s not true at all. We have some great spaces outside of the greater Seattle area. The White Board is all the way out in Issaquah and Suite 133 down in Tacoma has been around for as long as Office Nomads has been. We grew up together!

http://thewhiteboard.biz

http://www.suite133.com

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation

http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:07 AM, Tom Brandt [email protected] wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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@twbrandt


twb
member, Workantile

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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Thanks for the feedback everyone. It’s awesome to have all your opinions.

Thanks for your thoughts about building community Alex. I’ve started hosting coworking days in my home to get the ball rolling. One of my friends who is coming regularly said I should be charging for this to cover coffee, internet etc. Do you think it’s wise to charge a nominal amount like $10 per day?

Thanks for your thoughts Jacob. I’ll check out those two spaces you mentioned.

And Jenifer, I would love to pick your brains. I’ll be in touch!

It’s a very exciting time to be in this space. There are coworking hubs springing up like mushrooms all over Australia! :slight_smile:

Susan,

Lets pretend for a minute that it wasn’t your friend who suggested you charge. And pretend for a minute that you were the guest, not the host. You’ve never coworked before, but you’ve heard of Coworking. Meanwhile, you have coffee and Internet at home. And you’re already at home.

Would you be willing, or even excited, to pay $10 to cover the cost of someone else’s coffee and Internet? Probably not.

Now, let’s try a different thought experiment.

Again, you’ve never coworked before.

You’re sitting at home, working from your kitchen counter. You’ve been working on a project all morning and are a bit stuck on a decision. You go back and forth in your head, over and over…but still can’t get unstuck. You turn to the dog, who is looking at you with the same puzzled face you’ve been giving your work for the last hour. You start to ask the dog, “what would you do?”, before realizing that the dog isn’t going to answer you.

After refilling your coffee, the clothes washer buzzes, breaking your concentration again. You should keep working on your project, but you decide to take another break to fold your clothes. Another unproductive morning at home. Man, working alone sucks.

Would you pay $10 to escape this hell?

My point isn’t that your friend is right or wrong about charging. That’s up to you. But even at this early stage, you’re making the same mistake that many people with spaces make, thinking in terms of charging them for “stuff” instead of creating a valuable experience that they crave - being around other people - and charging for that. That needs to come through in your communication and your pricing and everything you do.

Fix that mindset early. It’ll pay off in the long run.

-Alex

···


/ah
indyhall.org

On Tue, Jul 16, 2013 at 5:57 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Thanks for the feedback everyone. It’s awesome to have all your opinions.

Thanks for your thoughts about building community Alex. I’ve started hosting coworking days in my home to get the ball rolling. One of my friends who is coming regularly said I should be charging for this to cover coffee, internet etc. Do you think it’s wise to charge a nominal amount like $10 per day?

Thanks for your thoughts Jacob. I’ll check out those two spaces you mentioned.

And Jenifer, I would love to pick your brains. I’ll be in touch!

It’s a very exciting time to be in this space. There are coworking hubs springing up like mushrooms all over Australia! :slight_smile:

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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True, population is a factor, but it seems to me that coworking communities don’t need thousands of people in them to be viable. If real-estate is cheep you can make a space that can get by with 40 or so members and even a town of 5000 probably has 40 people who want to work together.

···

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation
http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Tue, Jul 16, 2013 at 1:37 AM, Miguel Ángel Calero [email protected] wrote:

I don’t think the main issue is position, but population density.
We have developed coSfera, a coworking space in Córdoba (300000 in. city) in a residencial area with low density where nobody lives in the nearby, because of the population density. We are 38 members in a year, but we are opening a second space in the CBD area an there are people in the waiting list once we open there.

So, it’s not only about situation but also about population density.

Greetings!

El lunes, 15 de julio de 2013 18:35:21 UTC+2, Jenifer Ross escribió:

[email protected] is in Tarrytown, NY, population 12,000 and just closed out our second year with over 50 members and many a la carte users for desk time, conference room bookings and event space rental. Susan- feel free to email or call me to talk details and strategy for the suburban model!

Jenifer

Sent from my iPhone

On Jul 15, 2013, at 12:19 PM, Jacob Sayles [email protected] wrote:

That’s not true at all. We have some great spaces outside of the greater Seattle area. The White Board is all the way out in Issaquah and Suite 133 down in Tacoma has been around for as long as Office Nomads has been. We grew up together!

http://thewhiteboard.biz

http://www.suite133.com

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation

http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:07 AM, Tom Brandt [email protected] wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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@twbrandt


twb
member, Workantile

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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lol - I tell the same story - but it’s a “cat.” Cute, but a lot dumber! Alex - Can I re-use the “Would you pay $10 to escape this hell?” blurb? I’ll give ya props and links.

···

On Tuesday, 16 July 2013 09:28:44 UTC-4, Alex Hillman wrote:

Susan,

Lets pretend for a minute that it wasn’t your friend who suggested you charge. And pretend for a minute that you were the guest, not the host. You’ve never coworked before, but you’ve heard of Coworking. Meanwhile, you have coffee and Internet at home. And you’re already at home.

Would you be willing, or even excited, to pay $10 to cover the cost of someone else’s coffee and Internet? Probably not.

Now, let’s try a different thought experiment.

Again, you’ve never coworked before.

You’re sitting at home, working from your kitchen counter. You’ve been working on a project all morning and are a bit stuck on a decision. You go back and forth in your head, over and over…but still can’t get unstuck. You turn to the dog, who is looking at you with the same puzzled face you’ve been giving your work for the last hour. You start to ask the dog, “what would you do?”, before realizing that the dog isn’t going to answer you.

After refilling your coffee, the clothes washer buzzes, breaking your concentration again. You should keep working on your project, but you decide to take another break to fold your clothes. Another unproductive morning at home. Man, working alone sucks.

Would you pay $10 to escape this hell?

My point isn’t that your friend is right or wrong about charging. That’s up to you. But even at this early stage, you’re making the same mistake that many people with spaces make, thinking in terms of charging them for “stuff” instead of creating a valuable experience that they crave - being around other people - and charging for that. That needs to come through in your communication and your pricing and everything you do.

Fix that mindset early. It’ll pay off in the long run.

-Alex


/ah
indyhall.org

On Tue, Jul 16, 2013 at 5:57 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Thanks for the feedback everyone. It’s awesome to have all your opinions.

Thanks for your thoughts about building community Alex. I’ve started hosting coworking days in my home to get the ball rolling. One of my friends who is coming regularly said I should be charging for this to cover coffee, internet etc. Do you think it’s wise to charge a nominal amount like $10 per day?

Thanks for your thoughts Jacob. I’ll check out those two spaces you mentioned.

And Jenifer, I would love to pick your brains. I’ll be in touch!

It’s a very exciting time to be in this space. There are coworking hubs springing up like mushrooms all over Australia! :slight_smile:

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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Heh, here’s an actual slide from a new presentation I’m working on. Actual quote from an actual member:

Inline image 1

···

/ah
indyhall.org

coworking in philadelphia

On Wed, Jul 17, 2013 at 11:34 AM, Chad Ballantyne [email protected]ail.com wrote:

lol - I tell the same story - but it’s a “cat.” Cute, but a lot dumber! Alex - Can I re-use the “Would you pay $10 to escape this hell?” blurb? I’ll give ya props and links.

On Tuesday, 16 July 2013 09:28:44 UTC-4, Alex Hillman wrote:

Susan,

Lets pretend for a minute that it wasn’t your friend who suggested you charge. And pretend for a minute that you were the guest, not the host. You’ve never coworked before, but you’ve heard of Coworking. Meanwhile, you have coffee and Internet at home. And you’re already at home.

Would you be willing, or even excited, to pay $10 to cover the cost of someone else’s coffee and Internet? Probably not.

Now, let’s try a different thought experiment.

Again, you’ve never coworked before.

You’re sitting at home, working from your kitchen counter. You’ve been working on a project all morning and are a bit stuck on a decision. You go back and forth in your head, over and over…but still can’t get unstuck. You turn to the dog, who is looking at you with the same puzzled face you’ve been giving your work for the last hour. You start to ask the dog, “what would you do?”, before realizing that the dog isn’t going to answer you.

After refilling your coffee, the clothes washer buzzes, breaking your concentration again. You should keep working on your project, but you decide to take another break to fold your clothes. Another unproductive morning at home. Man, working alone sucks.

Would you pay $10 to escape this hell?

My point isn’t that your friend is right or wrong about charging. That’s up to you. But even at this early stage, you’re making the same mistake that many people with spaces make, thinking in terms of charging them for “stuff” instead of creating a valuable experience that they crave - being around other people - and charging for that. That needs to come through in your communication and your pricing and everything you do.

Fix that mindset early. It’ll pay off in the long run.

-Alex


/ah
indyhall.org

On Tue, Jul 16, 2013 at 5:57 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Thanks for the feedback everyone. It’s awesome to have all your opinions.

Thanks for your thoughts about building community Alex. I’ve started hosting coworking days in my home to get the ball rolling. One of my friends who is coming regularly said I should be charging for this to cover coffee, internet etc. Do you think it’s wise to charge a nominal amount like $10 per day?

Thanks for your thoughts Jacob. I’ll check out those two spaces you mentioned.

And Jenifer, I would love to pick your brains. I’ll be in touch!

It’s a very exciting time to be in this space. There are coworking hubs springing up like mushrooms all over Australia! :slight_smile:

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


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Coworking has been successful outside of CBD, but they do have some challenges that many coworking spaces simply don’t encounter as often. As Alex said, it’s changing the mindset of people from stuff to an experience of being around others. That’s key because you aren’t solving a problem of space (some coworking spaces in urban areas have survived off that) as often in the suburbs because many have larger homes or a dedicated home office but you are solving the need of people and interaction. Also, the coworking awareness might be lower in suburbia so your time to profitability may simply be longer.

I would look to Link in Austin as an example of a space that is not in the downtown core but have been very successful. It is still a populated area but instead focused on being easily accessible with ample parking and lunch spots. She also is rocking it on building awareness of coworking and creating a great community.

Would you consider the place rural or suburban?

It depends on what you consider as a successful outcome.

coworking spaces are simple enought to run and if the area is super cheap you don’t need many customers … but you better adapt your business model because you’ll earn more from food than the coworking.

from an investor POV these small operations are unsuccessful because they are not sale-able/scalable businesses, they are however lifestyle businesses and if that fits for the owner, who cares what the anyone thinks as long as you can live well.

···

On Monday, July 15, 2013 5:07:56 PM UTC+1, Tom Brandt - Workantile wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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twb
member, Workantile
@twbrandt

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

···

On Monday, July 15, 2013 12:34:18 PM UTC+1, Susan Jones wrote:

and Alex is spot on with the point on make your point of difference that you charge of internet and coffee … Its about creating and maintaining a collaborative place to work… the question I’m asked most is “who else works here?”

“Good business = Something of value * Number of connections to share the value with.”

This is actually one of the areas we are targeting with our plan, to get coworking spaces into suburbs and smaller communities that want them.

One of our main goals is to bring awesome people together to do awesome things and give them an awesome place to do it. And we are doing it in that order.

Our planning for this started 4 years ago with the idea for a more worker friendly coffee shop, as that evolved we came across the concept of coworking and now that is the primary focus. But even among my friends, most had never heard of coworking before. So we are seeing that there is educational component as well. So we are looking to build and educate a community at the same time.

140+ likes on our facebook page in just over two weeks says we are heading in the right direction.

Keep at it, you’ll figure it out and be fine.

Be safe.

RC

···

On Monday, July 15, 2013 5:34:18 AM UTC-6, Susan Jones wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

I’m trying to start a coworking meetup group in a suburb of Boston. No business model or concrete plans to grow a coworking space, I work from home in the burbs and I’m interested in seeing who else out here would be drawn to it. The town I’m in is small, ~12,000, and its surrounded by very affluent towns of similar size or larger. My town is full of newly arrived young families and professionals taking advantage of the affordable housing, and there’s a longstanding art scene in town. There’s just a certain vibe here, about the residents being proud to be different.

I have my own home office, but I’m lonely most of the day, and my work habits aren’t as productive as they could be, which is what got me interested in starting a group.

···

On Monday, July 15, 2013 12:35:21 PM UTC-4, Jenifer Ross wrote:

[email protected] is in Tarrytown, NY, population 12,000 and just closed out our second year with over 50 members and many a la carte users for desk time, conference room bookings and event space rental. Susan- feel free to email or call me to talk details and strategy for the suburban model!

Jenifer

Sent from my iPhone

On Jul 15, 2013, at 12:19 PM, Jacob Sayles [email protected] wrote:

That’s not true at all. We have some great spaces outside of the greater Seattle area. The White Board is all the way out in Issaquah and Suite 133 down in Tacoma has been around for as long as Office Nomads has been. We grew up together!

http://thewhiteboard.biz

http://www.suite133.com

Jacob


Office Nomads - Individuality without Isolation

http://www.officenomads.com - (206) 323-6500

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 9:07 AM, Tom Brandt [email protected] wrote:

I’ve heard of a couple of coworking spaces in places far enough outside a cbd that people who would otherwise have a punishing commute into the cbd to work use the coworking space instead, for at least a few days a week.

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 4:34 AM, Susan Jones [email protected] wrote:

Hi Everyone, and thanks for the discussion.

I’m in Australia and was talking to an angel investor here recently. He told me that there had been no successful coworking spaces outside CBD areas. I’m wondering

  • if that is true in other places around the world,
  • if coworking spaces need to be in city centres and
  • if they can work in suburbs, do they need to do things differently or cater to a different target market?

Interested to hear your thoughts,

Thanks

Susan

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I’m the Executive Director of a coworking space in the Chicago suburbs. We’ve been here since 2010.
I realize this thread is older but did a search of the group and wanted to bring up the conversation again.

Through the years, we have discovered that people in the suburbs tend to want private offices or shared private offices more often than just open coworking. “Coworking” is kind of a new concept for some people. In the suburbs, people want to “own” something. They want their own office, their own desk, something they can call their own, rather than just sitting at any open space. In fact only about 30% - 40% of our members are coworkers, while the others are doing a private office or shared private office.

What have some of you fellow suburban spaces experienced?

Thank you,

Michael S. Copeland

http://www.elgintech.org

Hey Michael-

We opened [email protected] in June of 2011. We are in a town of 24,000 (Tarrytown/Sleepy Hollow) about 35 minutes north of NYC and we have about 60 membes. We only have one private office that two businesses share, and the remainder of the space is open in addition to one conference room and a kitchen area. Aside from these two businesses, about 75% are coworking members and the rest are Mail Members (virtual). We do get quite a few asking for closed door spaces, but generally, folks are happy to be in the open area. We only have 5 full time desk, and 7 hot desks, plus a lounge area, so typically it is not too loud and if members need some privacy they can hop into the conference room or phone booth. We find that people really enjoy the proximity to other members, and don’t mind the open nature of the space so long as they can get away for some privacy if needed.

The bulk of our revenue is from the desk usage and conference room use, but we also have a ton of evening events in which members and non-members rent the space for workshops and events, plus weekend classes, and art exhibits in which we take a small commission. Our growth has been between 20-25% per year - what we could use is more space! At 1,500 square feet, it is very boutique - but that also makes it very personal :slight_smile:

Cheers-

Jenifer

···

On Sun, Feb 8, 2015 at 4:27 PM, Michael Copeland [email protected] wrote:

I’m the Executive Director of a coworking space in the Chicago suburbs. We’ve been here since 2010.
I realize this thread is older but did a search of the group and wanted to bring up the conversation again.

Through the years, we have discovered that people in the suburbs tend to want private offices or shared private offices more often than just open coworking. “Coworking” is kind of a new concept for some people. In the suburbs, people want to “own” something. They want their own office, their own desk, something they can call their own, rather than just sitting at any open space. In fact only about 30% - 40% of our members are coworkers, while the others are doing a private office or shared private office.

What have some of you fellow suburban spaces experienced?

Thank you,

Michael S. Copeland

http://www.elgintech.org

Visit this forum on the web at http://discuss.coworking.com


You received this message because you are subscribed to the Google Groups “Coworking” group.

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Jenifer Ross
Co-Owner & Founder

[email protected]

21 North Broadway | Tarrytown, NY 10591

www.watercoolerhub.com

[email protected]

914-332-1400 | 914-261-1470 c

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