Owner expects Workshop Co. to be fully occupied this fallEntrepreneurial Support — By Melanie McIntyre on October 19, 2011 at 8:00 am
Despite its location in the former Sandbox space at 851 N. Pearl St. in the Short North, Workshop Co. is quite different from its predecessor.
Not only have the aesthetics of the 3,900-square-foot space been altered, its owner Brady Konya, who is also general manager and principal at Middle West Spirits, is working solely with entrepreneurs and small companies dedicated to working on their projects full-time.
In the redesign, 24/7 key fob access was installed for improved security, the size of the individual workspaces was increased, storage options were improved, all the fixtures and finishes were upgraded, and sound dampening panels were installed.
Further, long distance phone lines and collaboration features were added to both conference rooms, the in-house office supply closet was expanded, network bandwidth was increased, improvements were made to the casual meeting spaces, and window real estate on the building’s storefront has been dedicated to each brand operating in the studio.
Day passes, part-time memberships, and outside event rentals were eliminated. Amenities include a dedicated mailbox, color printers, a fax machine, a gourmet kitchen, and a bike share program.
Prior to founding Middle West Spirits and Workshop Co., Konya worked in the advertising world, where he spent more than a decade working in creatively driven offices all over the globe.
“What we did at Workshop Co. was take that experience and curate an environment that would appeal entrepreneurs who were inspired by the energy of working in an open studio floor plan,” he says. “We took a great deal of time to create a bright, ecclectic, and well appointed space that reflected our creative roots and gave the studio a distinctive design element that was authentic for the neighborhood, the building, and the group of companies that call Workshop Co. home.”
Those companies are Trait Creative, FoleyInk, Case Close/Urbity, HB2Web/Fizzy Media, Wonderland, Shoe Repertoire, and Middle West Annex.
Space in Workshop Co.’s main studio is available. Currently, its two semi-private offices are occupied, and there is a short waiting list for those offices in particular.
A desk in the main studio costs $395 per month per person, with a 6-month renewable term.
“The extended term was designed to maximize community building and minimize the disruptions associated with too much movement in and out of the space, which has turned out to be one of the most appealing elements for our current tenants,” he says.
For some, $395 may still be out of reach for one person, so Workshop Co. offers a program called Desk Share that allows a member to add a second person to their work station for $20 more a month.
“All of our studio desks are quite large −72 inches− and easily accommodate two members working across from one another,” he says.
Workshop Co. officially opened in April, and Konya hopes to be at full occupancy this fall.
“Columbus has a shortage of spaces like Workshop Co. that fill a gap in the infrastructure necessary to attract and retain the very talent that makes up the fabric of a vibrant startup community,” he says. “Spaces designed for both tech and non-tech ideas…folks that make clothes, sell shoes, distill vodka, paint paintings, practice law, design interiors and, yes, make websites. Not everyone is inspired by a cube at TechColumbus, ready to entertain a client out of their dining room, or do business development at the coffee shop.”
Konya recommends that prospective members visit all the co-working spaces available in Columbus before going to Workshop Co., so they have a sense of what kind of environments are available and which models are most consistent with the way that they work best.
“Some folks want an office with its own doors and walls, and others want short-term flexibility with a place to network and socialize,” he says. “We serve a part of the startup community that thrives in a space defined by its bright, open floor plan and recognized for its strong supportive community, full-time commitment, and high degree of professionalism. Don’t get me wrong, its still a very casual environment. But one that’s dedicated to work.”
To learn more about Workshop Co., visit Facebook.com/WorkshopCo.
Melanie McIntyre served as editorial director of The Metropreneur from its launch in August 2010 to May 2013. She is also a featured writer for Columbus Underground and writes about fashion, style and pop culture on her blog, Thoroughly Modern Melly. Melanie is an Ohio State University graduate, lives in the Short North, and enjoys reading and running.
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