For some, the growth in popularity of coworking offices might seem like an overnight success. However, it is a success that was 10 years in the making, with demand for smaller, more flexible workspaces having grown constantly since the beginning of the recession. Today, we’ve reached a point where coworking has become mainstream and companies are starting to diversify their offerings to try to service specific niches.
Judging by the numbers, Portland’s coworking office inventory is currently one of the more modest ones on the West Coast. With some 460,000 square feet of office space, representing 0.7% of the city’s office inventory, Portland is behind Seattle, Los Angeles and San Francisco, which have 1.1%, 1.8% and 2% of their respective office inventories dedicated to coworking spaces. Nonetheless, the market is ripe with future potential, and while popular coworking brands like WeWork and Industrious make their move in Rose City, we decided to compile a list of home-grown coworking hubs. Read on to get a sense of the local scene and book a tour to find out more about each company’s offers and amenities.
If you decide to join CENTRL Office’s coworking spaces, you’re going to be spoiled for choice. They have three different locations in Portland―CENTRL Pearl District, inside the historic GE Supply Co. building, CENTRL Eastside, located on the first three floors of the Slate building, and―the company’s latest addition―CENTRL West End, at the intersection of SW 12th and Morrison. Members can work at any CENTRL location, with unlimited access to social events, workshops, concierge services (starting at $25 per hour) and discounts for event spaces and meeting rooms―you can choose between small meeting rooms for 4-6 guests, medium ones for 8-10, or large ones for up to 20 guests. Another great thing about each of these coworking spots is their vicinity to exciting neighbors like the Multnomah Whiskey Library (CENTRL West End), Tilt and MEC (CENTRL Pearl District), and COSUBE and Knot Springs (CENTRL Eastside).
Collective Agency describes itself as a place for “cozy working alongside people doing what they’re passionate about and committed to, where 80% of people say hi.” So, it’s safe to say they like to nurture a sense of community within their Downtown and Richmond office spaces, dubbed Collective Agency Division and Collective Agency Downtown, respectively. Besides an assortment of tea, coffee, espresso and hot chocolate, the company also organizes potluck-style community meals made for and by members. And if you thought that this wasn’t quirky and laid-back enough for you, you’ll be delighted to type away in an office that sports a disco ball and a shared telescope for those entrepreneurs trying to reach for the sky.
The Perlene is a coworking space designed with a clear mission in mind. Its goal is to contribute to “a world where feminine leadership is the standard, women are empowered to define their futures, and we are all living full, satisfying, courageous lives.” There are many things that will strike you about this Hosford – Abernethy office space―from the lush interior to their tongue-in-cheek descriptions of the company’s history and its amenities and, most importantly, the strong emphasis on the social aspect of coworking. The Perlene entices members with monthly brunches, weekly coaching circles, craft nights, movie nights, book clubs, writing clubs and more than 20 other classes each month. Besides a choice of shared workspace or dedicated desks, members also get access to a library and a directory with professional information about current members. Come to The Perlene, for they have cookies (no, seriously, they do)!
ExecuTech Suites is ideally located for those who need to travel frequently or receive business clients. The three-story office building at 5933 NE Win Sivers Drive―with views of Mt Hood and the Columbia River―is close to Portland International Airport and the I-205. This Parkrose office space is conveniently close to the TriMet line 87 bus stop and has an ongoing collaboration with a neighboring hotel to offer free airport shuttle services. Interested in your membership options? You can choose a coworking office for $199 per month, a virtual office for $99 per month, a shared office for $309 month-to-month and a private office for a starting price of $490 per month.
Located on the 8th floor of the Tiffany Center at 1410 SW Morrison Street, Forge Portland offers 5,800 square feet of office space for socially minded freelancers and startups. Hot desk memberships cost $225 per month, getting a private desk will cost you $325 per month, while prices for private offices fall between $500 and $800 per month. 15-person classrooms are available for training and meeting purposes. Members can also expect to get business advice, marketing, accounting and financial consulting, as well as legal advice and services. The company enjoys the support of Small Business Legal Clinic, Oregon Entrepreneurs Network and Freelancers Union, and members have access to mentorship and intern placement opportunities.
This coworking office space in Corbett – Terwilliger is designed to honor Portland’s heritage. Located at 4949 SW Macadam Ave, between the South Waterfront, John’s Landing, and the Willamette River Greenway, inside a renovated building, complete with custom-made wood and steel finishings, it provides easy access to Downtown Portland, the I-5, Lake Oswego and Southwest Portland neighborhoods. Several options are available, either with or without on-site parking, and all of them let you use conference rooms (for up to 26 people), lockers, bike racks and the on-site fitness center. Hop on your bike or take the bus―numbers 35,36 and 43 stop right in front of their premises―and book a tour at Urban Office.
If you’re looking for a coworking office space in Kerns, you might want to give HatchLab PDX, at 2420 NE Sandy Blvd., a shot. The place welcomes not only budding companies and freelancers, but also professionals who can help businesses grow: mentors, volunteers, trainers and others. HatchLab is focused on making ideas that have an impact on the community come to life. One of their recurring events is the Social Pitch―an event where selected speakers showcase their plans for bettering certain social issues. In terms of perks, members can look forward to discounts and special offers at several local shops and service providers, from printing, to ride-sharing and bookkeeping. If you need some time to decide which offer is the right one for you, apply for a 10 Day Pass that will allow you to discover everything that HatchLab PDX has to offer.
The coworking offices at Hive are part of the Leftbank project, a 20,000-square-foot building dedicated to people with different skill sets that have one thing in common: they wish to effect change. The place is a mix of “craft, creativity, bikes, brewing, coffee, slow food, art, reuse, and community,” that sits within Portland’s Lloyd District, at the intersection of Broadway and Weidler. Sign up for a shared or dedicated desk―made of salvaged tropical hardwood―and you’ll also get to use on-site showers, locker rooms, common areas and meeting rooms, and indoor and outdoor bicycle parking. You can reach them by bus, MAX or bike, at 240 N Broadway.