An overview of the seven new facilities that opened in the Triangle in 2016 to offering coworking, makerspace or startup-friendly offices.
With seven new or expanded startup-friendly spaces in 2016 and 10 campuses coming or growing in 2017, it’s never been easier to find a unique place to work or build a company in the Triangle.
Particularly interesting about 2016 was the growth of the co-working movement in smaller towns around the Triangle, as well as those in our urban centers growing in big ways to meet demand in the community.
Part two of this series will look at the expansions and openings planned for 2017, but for now, check out our 2016 space update:
The fast growth of natural bug repellent maker Murphy’s Naturals prompted the company to open this co-working space that’s open to any sort of worker. Located just north of downtown along the Atlantic Avenue corridor, Loading Dock reuses 5,000 square feet of an old Winn-Dixie warehouse for a two-story facility with a large co-working area, three conference rooms, a library, kitchen and cafe, along with private offices for Murphy’s and other small businesses and nonprofits. Sharing the building is a new brewery, distillery, modern furniture store, caterer and art studio.
Loading Dock opened in May with 40 members and had space up for up to 150. They pay anywhere from $99 monthly for coworking to $700 for a private office. Murphy’s will finish out another 12,000 square feet in 2017, offering distribution/storage/assembly space for makers and e-commerce companies.
Opened in June in the heart of downtown Raleigh is a two-story space with about 80 entrepreneurs, startups, remote workers and creatives as members. Founded by Betaversity’s Sean Newman Maroni and Michael Hobgood, the 8,500-square-foot space includes 15 private office suites, conference rooms as well as a bird-themed co-working, kitchen & bar area. Prices range from $200-300 per desk, or you can buy a $15 day pass.
Nest Raleigh is host to a lot of classes and community events. A sampling of past events are here.
Nest Raleigh occupies two floors of a downtown Raleigh building for coworking and private offices. Credit: Nest Raleigh
Opened in March 2016 is the latest expansion of American Underground, this time for larger scaling teams. Teams with as many as 10 employees work in 25 offices on two floors in the former Trust building at the corner of Main and Market streets, with all the amenities of the flagship American Underground across the street.
The goal of the space is to provide growing companies a place to move beyond co-working or small offices on its Main or American Tobacco campuses, deterring them from entering the more complex and costly commercial real estate market.
The historic Trust building in downtown Durham is being renovated into a third American Underground campus and home to Windsor Circle and the Durham CVB.
Wake Forest’s second coworking space opened in July in the heart of downtown. Hatch was founded by entrepreneurial Johnson family, who also own Wake Forest businesses Medfaxx, NC Beach Bingo and The Cotton Company.
There’s just coworking and meeting space here—no private offices—but it’s clearly filling a need. Wake Forest Coworking’s owner told The News & Observer earlier this year that it had no room for additional members and would be referring people to Hatch. Smaller town co-working spaces offer free parking as an amenity, and typically have lower prices—the range at Hatch is $100 to $250 monthly.
With $50,000 from the town of Holly Springs, the city’s first co-working space opened in the old police department headquarters in April, with desks and offices for 45 workers. According to The News & Observer, the space was so popular that more renovations were completed by August to make room for more private offices and larger conference space. Owner Jon Harol, who also co-owns Lighthouse Recruiting, Laboratory Start-Up Consultants and Laboratory Broker, negotiated a three-year lease to get the space off the ground, with plans to eventually move to a larger building a couple blocks away.
Holly Springs offers many of the same amenities as larger spaces, including Carolina Brewing Company beer on tap, coffee, wi-fi and conference rooms. Prices range from $80 for a five-day pass to $599.
Coworking Station is a downtown Holly Springs coworking space that opened in 2016. Credit: Coworking Station
UNC opened three innovation spaces on its campus in 2016, each offering a variety of tools and equipment, classes and programming for a variety of creatives and makers. The largest of the three spaces, in Murray Hall, opened in November. It offers woodworking, metalworking, 3D printing and digital fabrication. While these spaces are only open to students, faculty and staff, they are an important way of funneling more innovation and entrepreneurial activity into the broader community, and a recruitment tool for future makers.
Global real estate brand Regus has embraced the popularity of coworking environments and is integrating its global “Spaces” brand into its offices in Raleigh. Coworking now takes over half of the 15th floor at Tower II at North Hills.
With modern furniture, an open concept kitchen area, lockers and private rooms, Regus hopes that this Spaces location will create a productive and cooperative atmosphere for local businesses. There are 60 coworking spots still remaining here. Individual monthly membership starts at $99 for part-time and $250 for full-time, with the ability to transfer between any Regus Spaces location.
Unique to Raleigh’s Spaces is the opportunity for members to join The Collective, a new business group founded by entrepreneurs Mark Bavisotto (founder of On-Demand IT Services and regional director of Startup Grind) and Jamie Allen (founder of Relentless Media, EXSell Training Solutions, Liquid Fusion Interactive, kik Vapor and TruView360VR). They’ll work in a community management role at Spaces, providing coaching sessions, discounted vendor services, invitations to exclusive monthly networking and speaker series events and access to venture and angel capital companies.
According to Allen, the space will also partner with universities to offer an internship program to further benefit the participating businesses and the community. Current members of The Collective include Startup Grind, Google for Entrepreneurs, AC Hotels, Relentless Media, Fahrenheit, and more. Kirsten Barber contributed.
Startup Grind partnered with Regus to help open its “Spaces” coworking at North Hills in Raleigh. Credit: ExitEvent
Laura Baverman manages the day-to-day at ExitEvent, writing and editing stories, lining up contributors, overseeing events and representing us in the community. Laura has spent a decade in journalism, most of those years as a business reporter in her hometown Cincinnati. Her Ohio roots run deep, but she's learning to love the South. Especially sun, all months of the year.