Sharing Spaces

Earlier this year, I attended a heritage walking tour of the industrial north end of Grandview. The tour leader was keen to point out the close connection between residence and business in the early days. Many people could walk to work in a few minutes.  Since then, zoning policies have tended to go in the opposite direction — forcing residences and businesses apart. Many of us believe that developing a more efficient and lively local economy involves innovative approaches to zoning for mixed use and the introduction of more affordable live/work spaces.

Along those lines, the always reliable Creative Review has an interesting article this month about the successful development of “co-working environments that foster creativity and community.”

“Co-working spaces offer both flexibility and the sense of community that freelancers or those starting out often miss from larger offices. We visited three co-working spaces in Manchester to examine the various models on offer and how their owners seeks to make those who work there feel like they are part of something bigger”

co-working

The idea of rented and shared office space is something that many professions have used for decades in the city. You rent a cubicle or desk, or just a telephone-answering secretary, and along with it comes an address, a phone number, access to various facilities, and the appearance of long term stability.

The Creative Review piece is about expanding that idea to startups and creatives. Once again, not a novel concept. But it comes at a timely fashion to Grandview-Woodland where this kind of arrangement could be designed to work well and increase the scope of the local economy where people live and work. There are numbers of older industrial buildings — especially along the Clark corridor and along Odlum — where this could be tried.

I know it’s not condos, but ….

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