FREELANCERS UNITE! THE UPPER WEST SIDE NEEDS CO-WORKING SPACE

Coworking_Space_in_Berlin
A co-working space in Berlin.

Co-working spaces have been popping up throughout the city for the past few years to give entrepreneurs the ability to work in an office without paying for an entire floor. Unfortunately, there aren’t co-working spaces on the Upper West Side, and we’ve heard from frustrated freelancers and small business owners who have to leave the area to find space.

Jennifer Maguire Coughlin, who runs a monthly meetup for people who work from home on the Upper West Side (the next one is next Wednesday), told us that she thinks there would be a big market for a space in the neighborhood.

“A co-working space would be a great addition to the neighborhood, as there already is a strong community of freelancers, entrepreneurs and creative professionals on the UWS who telecommute or work from home. The Upper West Side Work From Home group has grown to more than 150 people – clearly there’s a market that would support for a co-working space.”

A co-working space called Harlem Garage just opened at 318 West 118th street and they’re charging $300 a month for space. The city helped out with a $250,000 grant.

Upper West Sider Sharon Schanzer contacted us this week and says she’s looking to launch a co-working office, and she’s already got her eyes on a space above Shun Lee on 65th street. Schanzer said she isn’t wedded to the space (there is no lease on it, she just thinks it would work well) and wants to hear other suggestions. She’s hosting a meetup (location to be determined) at 10 a.m. on Thursday, November 21. You can sign up here.

Here’s a list of incubators, accelerators, and co-working spaces in the city. (No, “incubators” don’t contain small chicks. And yeah, I hate tech-speak too.)

NEWS | 11 comments | permalink
    1. Ken says:

      This initiative is good. Commercial enterprises in Chelsea, like Regus, who rent out a desk / phone /internet access by the month are charging many multiples of $300/month.

    2. Rebecca says:

      A coworking space on the UWS would be amazing. I live in the neighborhood and own a small business. I looked at a number of shared office spaces over the summer, and the most convenient I could find was in Chelsea (the majority of them are in downtown areas like SoHo, TriBeCa, and the West Village). Even though I’m desperate to get out of my home office, I decided to stick it out in my apartment for the time being–one of the reasons I work for myself is to have some flexibility in where/when I work, and it just didn’t make sense to give myself a long daily commute (and the added costs associated with it). But 65th Street would be fantastic!!

    3. Scooter Stan says:

      Re: ‘FREELANCERS UNITE!”

      Isn’t that sorta like:

      1. Anarchist’s Organizational Meeting

      or

      2. Agnostic’s Worship Service

      ??

    4. asolo says:

      Oh please someone create a use for that eyesore vacant Rite-Aid space at Broadway and 96th. Please.

      • Ken says:

        Nobody wants it. The property was visually blocked by the Starship Enterprise when it permanently docked in the middle of Broadway between 95th & 96th. So now, not only can you not see the property but if you are on the east side of Broadway, it takes five minutes to cross the street to get to it.

        • UpperWestHazel says:

          ? Foot traffic is surely great. But what is it with the traffic lights ? While I do understand it has to do with left-turns for cars…people largely don’t understand, and routinely give up waiting and charge across. I try to cross at 95th or 97th

        • Scooter Stan says:

          I believe the MTA calls that thing a “Head House” … or is that “Hen House” as pronounced by someone with a bad head cold? Would be more appropriate, considering some of the ‘dumb clucks’ in MTA management.
          🙂

          And as for that other ‘spaceship’ on the median a block north, sometimes occupied by a local artist group, it once was a public bathroom. Some of the artists still call it “The Toilet”…referring, of course, to its former identity, NOT to its artwork!
          🙂 x 2

          • Bruce Bernstein says:

            of course the subway kiosk in the middle of Bway between 95 and 96th is a vast improvement over the old subway stop for regular riders. you don’t have to go down and then up again, no floods on the access floors, much more accomodating of crowds, easier access to metrocards, a nice plaza, and so on. the claim that it made the Rite-Aid space less valuable is ludicrous. i’m willing to bet the problem is whatever ridiculous rent the landlord is trying to charge.

            • Ken says:

              Of course it makes it less valuable. It decreased the retail rent values and desirability of whole west side of Broadway from 95 to 96. Not arguing that the station rebuild was not necessary b/c it was – but the above-ground portion it is ugly as hell, unnecessary high and visually divides east from west on that portion of Broadway.

    5. Mark Birch says:

      Thanks for linking to my co-working list! I found your article because a friend was looking for UWS co-working and I was amazed to find nothing existed other than Harlem Garage. I agree that it would be a huge market.

      • Rob says:

        Has anything happened since this was posted? I’d be very interested in getting involved with a shared office/studio space on the upper westside.