Coworking in Newry: a story of innovation!

by suzanne

Coworking; how we finally delivered the workspace our residents needed!

If we are totally honest we never set out to own and operate our own coworking space. As we have found from meeting many UK and European operators over the years the common theme is:

“It just sort happened, we were self-employed, we realised that working from home was no longer an option. The building that we decided to locate our offices in was just too large for us alone and so we let out a few desks and the rest they say is history. It was only after a year that we discovered that what we were doing was coworking.”

 

When we sit back and reflect over our last seven years of The Hub Newry whilst our business member mix has evolved so too has our workspace. We have lost count of the partitions we have erected and subsequently taken down, from the introduction of offices pods to bee-hives and phone booths there is never a dull moment in the evolution of coworking space. We have also discovered through our involvement with Green Tourism UK the importance of sustainability in the design and day to day operation of a workspace.

 Our Coworking Model Evolves:

As the requirements of our coworking members and the wider industry of coworking evolved we realised that we needed to grow and innovate alongside this and that the paradigm was that workspace was evolving into far more than just bricks and mortar.

We already knew that that our residents needed a desk and access to meeting rooms but we quickly realised that having a coffee and a chat with a coworking colleague or a client was arguably more important than having access to a desk.

We also realised that the health and wellbeing of our members is vital to everyone’s success. The crossover between hospitality and coworking industry models has grown massively over the last few years and will only continue to get bigger and more positive.

 

Enter Our New Margaret Street premises:

It was at this point we were introduced to 6 Margaret Street a property in Newry City Centre that had laid vacant since the recession. We quickly realised that it would allow us to create the workspace we had always wanted by having a ground floor residents and public café, modern offices, meeting rooms and a roof top garden.

Delivering the new Hub coworking site we will admit has not been easy, it has tested us like no project has before, but as we near completion, the excitement is building and the workspace exceeded our expectations

 

The Space:

When we opened our current Hub open plan was all the rage but we quickly learned that for many residents noise can be a distraction. The design concept behind the new coworking space is more private spaces and offices. Yes, we have kept some small hot desking areas, but in the main, residents will now have their own dedicated offices and spaces and still be within a business community. The open plan interaction and activities will happen in the Hub café and the meeting areas which we are very excited about.

The Hub Café:

Newry is a town that punches well above its weight with great cafes and restaurants in the city. Grounded, Finegan & Son, Maya Café, Cafe Krem to name but a few are adored by us all as a family. We have a seven and ten year-old that will not accept a chocolate Brownie from anywhere else but Grounded.

The Hub Café we believe will offer something different to the business community. From being able to have a coffee and a chat with member or client to having a confidential meeting without the world listening in as they tend to do when you meet in a hotel foyer. We hope our café gives the Newry business community somewhere different to meet and conduct business.

 

Biophilia:

We know what you are thinking, but no, biophilia is not a fear of completing your ‘A’ Level Biology Homework.

One of the main trends in office and workplace design is the incorporation of plants into the workspace, this is biophilia. All the data out there proves that nature has the ability to make us feel positive and more relaxed; that moment when you first see the sea, the smell of freshly cut flowers and that feeling can be attributed to the phenomena known as biophilia; the innate need and desire for humans to have contact with the natural world.

Recent studies have found a positive impact between biophilic elements (such as the presence of plants and exposure to natural light) and worker wellbeing and productivity.

One of the first things any visitor will notice upon visiting the hub is the vast amount of plants in the premises both inside and outside. We believe we are now one of the few offices in Ireland to have properly incorporated biophilia into the workspace including the provision of a roof top garden and community projects that will run alongside this. We look forward to residents feedback in relation to this initiative.

Our Roof Garden:

The Hub Newry has been lucky to be exposed to the current leading-edge trends in office design through the advisory role of our Hub resident Capsure Tax. The business has expertise through some of the UK’s leading office schemes with some of the UK and Ireland’s leading developers.

“We have seen Argents Kings Cross development in London and it literally blew our minds!”

The feature every office building in Kings Cross has is the incorporation of outdoor garden space in the office design. These gardens at Kings Cross have been such an outstanding success that occupiers and landlords alike are now asking themselves why it took so long for office gardens to become mainstream as it is so obvious they would be a success.

We will invite all visitors to our new Hub to experience our roof gardens for themselves, small but beautiful is how we would describe it!

Now as we come to the end of the project we look forward to welcoming our existing and new and potential members to experience the new workspace.

 

To learn more just give us a buzz on +44 (0)28 302 60122, email at:

info@thehubnewry.com  or pop in and visit!

 

 

 

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