Decoding Design

Coworking not just for geeks on laptops

Coworking not just for geeks on laptops

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Coworking spaces like HQ Boston could marry the collaborative aspects of shared office space with the DIY aspects of engineering labs and prototyping shops.

After outgrowing its space in Boston's Allston neighborhood, Geekhouse Bikes, a small 10-year-old bicycle frame manufacturer, needed more room to grow. They found it, and then some. The company recently moved into a 25,000 square foot space in Boston's Innovation District. Thing is, it currently only fills about 1,000 square feet of space. So Geekhouse is looking for like-minded companies to create a co-working space for makers of things.

"Makers, manufacturers, artists, photographers, graphic designers, programers, if you are the kind of person who is making something we are looking for you." That's how the tenant want-ad for Headquarters Boston opens.

The concept is similar to that of many other co-working spaces popping up all over, which we've covered here, here and here.

Tenants can assume parcels of 500, 1,000 or 2,000 square feet of space. And Geekhouse is hoping they'll spark collaborations with each other, or at least be able to barter for services and advice. That's no different than any co-working space, but the small-scale manufacturing aspect is novel.

Facilities such as Tech Shop are turning tinkerers into makers, providing the tools and equipment they need to move designs out of CAD and into real prototypes. Coworking spaces like HQ Boston could marry the collaborative aspects of coworking with the hands-on leaning and sharing vibes of a Tech Shop, whether the tenants are making bicycles, furniture or snowboards.

Headquarters Boston from Paper Fortress on Vimeo.

Image: Flickr/Marion Doss
[Via: Core77]

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Mary Catherine O'Connor

Contributing Writer

Mary Catherine O'Connor has written for Outside, Fast Company, Wired.com, Smithsonian.com, Entrepreneur, Earth2Tech.com, Earth Island Journal and The Magazine. She is based in San Francisco. Follow her on Twitter. Disclosure