The national press has a lot of focus on Detroit as of late, and recently Fast Company, a business-focused magazine and website, profiled the coworking movement in America and highlighted Detroit as one of the hot places for the concept.
Coworking, if you haven’t heard of it, builds on the concept of shared space – so there are not only desks, but events, access to tools, mentoring, and networking.
The story focuses on the success of two spaces, Ponyride in Corktown and Bamboo Detroit in downtown Detroit.
A snippet about Ponyride:
Ponyride opened in the hip Corktown neighborhood of Detroit in 2011 as a maker space and light industrial facility, with small businesses, including a furniture maker, clothing manufacturers, and a screen printing studio. “I would say in the ecosystem of Detroit we’re in the middle of the road of taking someone who maybe started a business in their basement or their kitchen and are ready to expand,” says Amy Kaherl, director of programming. Kaherl is also a long-time tenant and director of Detroit Soup, which hosts dinners to raise money for creative projects pitched at the events.
Also, highlighting Bamboo Detroit:
Even downtown Detroit’s coworking scene looks different from what you might see in New York City or London. Bamboo Detroit has roughly 100 members ranging from Asia Newson, the 13-year owner of a candle-making company called Super Business Girl, to people in their 60s. About 45% of members are African American, and 40% are women, says CEO Amanda Lewan. Many Bamboo tenants are usual suspects for coworking spaces—such as game, app, and web developers and marketing consultants. It also has gigabit Internet provider Rocket Fiber and real estate developers jumping on Detroit’s downtown boom.
There’s of course more to the story on Fast Company – check it out here.