The Co-Working Trend is Expanding in New Directions

The market for co-working space in Atlanta just keeps growing—and now it’s moving beyond intown start-ups to suburban executives and Fortune 500 companies. While some see the co-working trend as a threat to traditional office leases, co-working space can be a great solution for clients of all sizes that are seeking temporary work space.

According to a WiredScore article published in Bisnow, Atlanta has become one of the top five markets in the U.S. for co-working. The city’s net absorption of office space is rising, but those numbers do not reflect the percentage of office leases signed by co-working companies. Co-working companies like Serendipity Labs, WeWork, and Industrious are expanding rapidly here.

Serendipity, for example, signed a franchise agreement in January to launch 12 co-working locations in Atlanta, Charleston, and Greenville, SC. The company has already opened a location at Three Alliance Center in Buckhead. WeWork just opened its second Buckhead location, bringing its total number of metro locations to four.

Recognizing an underserved market, Serendipity is focusing on the Atlanta suburbs, reports another Bisnow article. The company has just signed a deal for 26,000 SF at North Point Center East off Georgia 400 in North Fulton County, and it plans to pepper I-75 with co-working space by opening locations in the Cumberland/Galleria area, Marietta, Kennesaw, and Cartersville. Three more locations are planned along GA 400, along with a few more along I-85. The company’s focus on the suburbs is strategic; Serendipity’s client base is composed of mid- to senior-level executives who want to work closer to home rather than commuting to the city.

Industrious is expanding into the suburbs, too. In November, the company set up a 28,000-square-foot co-working space at 7000 Central Park in Sandy Springs—a centralized location for many of the company’s clients. The space, which can accommodate up to 200 workers, allows for larger floor plates and multi-floor leases for bigger tenants. Industrious recognizes that, amid economic uncertainty, many firms are looking for flexibility in their office spaces and want to avoid signing a long-term lease for now.

Of course, as these companies grow, establish their own culture, and normalize their operations, they will most likely seek traditional office space, which is far cheaper long-term than co-working space. Traditional office spaces can compete with the co-working space these companies are accustomed to by deploying popular design elements like glass walls and natural lighting, providing adaptable space with movable walls and modular furniture, and, above all, offering reliable digital connectivity, since many co-working companies promote their “seamless connectivity experience,” the WiredScore article notes.

Cresa Advisors can help a tenant find the perfect space for their business by considering co-working space as an option. It might be the ideal solution for tenants—from start-ups to Fortune 500s—seeking flexible, temporary space close to home. On the other hand, when a young company has reached financial stability and is rapidly growing, having its own space might promote more internal collaboration and facilitate teamwork. Having an office environment that is conducive to your internal operations and portrays your company image to clients and employees alike, might be warranted and less expensive than continuing in a co-working facility. At that time, Cresa can assist with the transition – whether a direct lease signed with the building landlord, or a shorter term, lower cost sublease with an existing tenant – representing the company’s best interests and negotiating the most cost-effective solution.

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