Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Shared workspace in Knoxville?

I don't want to get in the habit of using this blog for my own purposes, but it occurs to me that what I'm looking for might help more than just myself. In fact, this could be a great opportunity for downtown Knoxville.

You see, I need to get out of our house a couple times a week (or more, depending) to just work. In some cities they call this "shared" or "co-working" spaces. Essentially it's a place you go where you pay a portion of the rent, but you're not really there all the time, or you don't need the trappings of a full office.

Think of it like a micro-time-share. While at Macworld last week I visited the "offices" of Plasq, makers of some great Mac software. Their team is distributed across the planet, and a couple times a year they descend upon one geographic location to work together. In San Francisco they are using a place called "Citizen Space" which is very cool (just look at their bathroom!).

So I'm looking for something like that. Either a corner of someone's established office, or a larger space where a few of us home-based workers can set up shop. I'd happily share the costs, or pay someone a monthly pseudo-rent. Does something like this even exist in Knoxville? And yes, I'm aware of Executive Suites. Personally I think those are overpriced, not to mention quite sterile and rather far from my home location.

Ideally this would be downtown somewhere. I mean, if we're encouraging folks to live and work downtown, and you want the type of creative workers that flourish in a downtown space, shouldn't there be some place where they don't have to spend hundreds a month on rent? Not just a coffee shop, which is nice for occasional use, but not great for long periods of work.

As for why I need this-- it's basically needed to save our family. Working at home is grand, but the kids don't "get it" and it actually makes my wife's work (wrangling kids) much more difficult. While I was gone for a week in San Francisco everyone at home got into the "flow" of me being gone. And I'll admit-- absence makes the heart grow fonder! So while I dig being at home, it is clear I need a physical offsite for at least part of the week...

Anyone else in this position? Anyone know an at-home worker who might want to share bandwidth or office space?

You can reach me directly at: superpixelfeedback AT mac DOT com

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Anonymous Jay Cobble said...

Give me a call and I might be able to set you up with something. There are some possibilities out there.

Jay Cobble
Blue Ridge Realty, LLC

4:42 PM  
Blogger Alex Lavidge said...

Two Knoxville locals (having moved back from California) are putting together a grassroots coworking community that meets every Wednesday at Panera Bread on 4855 Kingston Pike in West Knoxville. To get more information you can join them on facebook or be notified of future events on upcoming.org. They also have a site on Google Groups where you can ask questions about coworking.

Coworking is a movement that is redefining the way some people work. It aims to show those who are self-employed, independent, or entrepreneurial how they can benefit by working around each other.

Lately, the new trend has caught the attention of Mother Jones, The New York Times, Business Week, and other publications.

The eventual goal is to get enough people organized so that a discussion can commence about establishing a physical not-for-profit coworking community venue in Knoxville.

In the meantime, the idea is just to provide a space that allows progressive, creative, independent people an opportunity to network and work around the company of others once a week.

7:44 PM  
Blogger Mitt Romney said...

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5:15 AM  
Anonymous Office Share Melbourne said...

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5:16 AM  

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