Network Hub: coworking and sustainability gathering

Last night I was among the many guests of Recollective on their brainstorming session on what a Vancouver Network Hub would be like.

First a little background info, coworking or office sharing is not a new idea and has been successful in many locations for years. One of Vancouver’s coworking/shared office spaces, perhaps the most popular one closed down suddenly. It had served as people’s office and also as an asset to the tech community in particular.

There was no opportunity to save it.

So a variety of people are interested in how to replace it and how to make sure it is sustainable and appealing to a wide variety of folks. As I alluded to above the gathering was well attended with a mix of artists, professionals, IT folks, there were several speakers, very little beer, and it was cramped further demonstrating the need for a co-working space.

networkHub

A working group was ultimately formed, I took a few pictures but there were others who hopefully have a summary of the various suggestions, some are expensive, I think to make it sustainable it can’t be too luxurious which is why we’d like to see it remain in the inner-city, reusing some of the empty space already here.

Raul typed up much of the early discussion, but no summary of the most desired features and the true, true must haves has emerged. I also tried to get a sense of how much space would be needed and how much people would pay per month, I’d like to see more work on that.

There was more than a few groups representing Chinatown which has cheaper rents than Gastown yet is mere blocks away and accessible by bus, skytrain, and bike. It even has a huge parkade or two for those who need their car for their business. Chinatown could very well be the location of the next “network hub” or “coworking space” to open in Vancouver. Here is a mockup of one space I did. It is totally not to scale…

mockup

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Building your Green Building Brain

At DemoCamp 07, which took place last night at Workspace in Vancouver’s inner-city, a number of new web platforms, frameworks, tool kits, and websites were presented and discussed including staff from the maker of this blogging platform.  However the presentation of most interest to this blog’s audience and mandate is the open source, copyright free, information network being built around green buildings and green architecture called the Green Building Brain.

The Green Building Brain is the brain child of the Vancouver Design Nerds and Recollective.  They are looking for help in building their website, finding bugs, and suggestions on how to make the Green Building Brain a useful resource for professionals and folks interested in learning more about greening an existing building or designing and building a green building.

I think this is a record for using green and building in one post/paragraph.