Why Creating a Workspace with Impact Matters for Austin
Austin is growing rapidly with a competitive job environment, thriving real estate market, and great culture. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Austin was the fifth fastest growing city in the country in terms of population from 2011 to 2012. In recent years, Austin’s population increased by a whopping 18.5%.
Despite all of the positive accolades our city receives, there are clear drawbacks to our entrepreneurial community. Nowhere is it more felt than with social impact entrepreneurs.
Social Entrepreneurs Risk Getting Priced Out of Austin
Even with hundreds of coworking spaces, Austin is very expensive for social entrepreneurs that are still gaining footing or in the middle raising money.
Two years ago, Austin’s commercial vacancy rates decreased from 9.23% to 7.76%, so there is less available space to go around.
Social Ventures Need Community As Much (If Not More) Than Traditional Tech Entrepreneurs
Coworking has many benefits, such as reducing the isolation and loneliness associated with working remotely. It has been reported that 79% of employees said coworking spaces have expanded their social networks and 89% report being happier in a coworking space.
At Notley we have invested a lot of time and energy over the years to provide resources to social entrepreneurs and help them scale and increase impact. At a certain point, we realized that one of their biggest needs was office space. Businesses like The Refinery and Black Fret needed a space to house their creative, world-changing endeavors while also increasing the opportunity for the spontaneous amplification of their communities. As we explored the possible solutions, we realized other individuals in Austin were ruminating on their very problem. The Center for Social Innovation (CSI) brings nonprofits, social enterprises, and capital providers together to foster collaboration, innovation, and entrepreneurship. Relay Coworking located at CSI is a 10,000+ sq. ft. coworking space for ambitious, no-nonsense social entrepreneurs creating scalable change in the world. Our vision for real estate is to create impact over time by providing sustainable, scalable homes for these organizations that have a social impact aspect. But Relay Coworking is not just an office space, it is a home that houses everything these organizations need to scale their impact. We want to give the big thinkers, the dreamers, and the doers a space where they can change the world. We want to give these freethinkers the materials they need to make an impact.