CoCo—a collaborative “co-working” firm that offers alternative office space to freelance professionals, small businesses, and corporate work groups—is branching out with a new location in Uptown Minneapolis.
CoCo opened its first location in St. Paul in 2010 and subsequently added a downtown Minneapolis location in the Minneapolis Grain Exchange building.
The new Uptown Minneapolis space, which will be located at the intersection of Lake Street and Lagoon Avenue, is slated to open this fall and will span 15,000 square feet. The new location will occupy a former car-repair shop and is below an existing CVS pharmacy, CoCo cofounder Don Ball told Twin Cities Business on Wednesday.
It will feature an area dubbed “The Garage,” a 3,500-square-foot open space “devoted to ideation, prototyping, and presentations for groups up to 100,” CoCo said. Other amenities include a “tap room” featuring craft beer, a movie theater for presentations and pitches, a billiard room that doubles as a meeting room, a walkout patio, and two conference rooms.
The Uptown location will include 160 seats for individual “co-workers,” as well as 24 single “campsites” (which give individuals their own dedicated desks) and nine larger “campsites,” with desks that seat four to six people, CoCo said.
One reason for the expansion is that there’s a waiting list at the downtown Minneapolis location. “We're simply bursting at the seams,” Ball said in an e-mail. “But we also are looking for ways to increase the reach and value of our memberships. So, with a space in Uptown, members will now have a home base in yet another important neighborhood.”
Ball said that pricing for “general co-working memberships” (meaning those that allow members to simply grab any available seat) will give members access to any of CoCo’s three locations. Membership fees vary based on frequency of visits to CoCo’s spaces; for example, $50 a month allows access to CoCo one day per week, and $250 a month grants full-time general membership.
Pricing for the so-called “campsites” in Uptown will be “slightly higher” than in the other locations, although the exact fees are still being determined, Ball said. According to CoCo’s website, it costs $350 per month to reserve a “single campsite” at its existing locations.
CoCo, which has garnered national attention for its co-working model, announced earlier this year that it has partnered with tech giant Google, Inc.—an arrangement that involves Google sponsoring two years’ worth of entrepreneur events in Minnesota. That announcement came about a year after Google Chairman Erik Schmidt joined Mayor R.T. Rybak and several local business leaders at CoCo, where Schmidt praised the Twin Cities’ culture of entrepreneurship.