(Photo by Holly Quinn)
But Delaware is its own world. We never even had a WeWork. Delaware’s biggest coworking space, The Mill, has seen big growth in 2019, and has plans for more expansion in the coming year. The Mill is part “old school” — yes, 2016 coworking trends like ping pong and beer kegs are considered old school these days — part future facing, offering entities of all sizes as office alternatives.
In a city like Wilmington, full of partially vacant buildings originally intended to house one big company, it’s a model that has proven effective so far.
Other spaces have focal points not necessarily accommodated by “traditional” coworking spaces, including wet labs for startups, spaces for arts entrepreneurs and a new space with a focus on uplifting underrepresented entrepreneurs in diverse Wilmington.
For this roundup, we’re including several types of spaces: the communal coworking space, mini offices, incubators, and a couple that don’t fit neatly into any category, but are not traditional office spaces.
Launched by Robert Herrera with the Buccini Pollin Group in 2016, The Mill has become a downtown fixture, located on the fourth floor of the Nemours Building. Members range from independent programmers to startups to big players like DuPont (which has a digital team there) and Acorns. It’s also the home of Zip Code Wilmington, and, as a bonus, has use of Theatre N on the second floor.
2019 saw quite a bit of growth for The Mill. It’s in the middle of launching its second location, The Mill Concord, in North Wilmington, with one floor of coworking space and a second floor devoted to private offices of various sizes.
It is also expanding to the Nemours Building’s seventh floor, where the space has been broken up into private offices for businesses and organizations, including the Delaware Prosperity Partnership. Tenants are moving in this month.
Cost: Community access for $60/month, dedicated desk $300/month, private office $850/month
Located within The Hercules Building at 1313 Market St. in Wilmington, 1313 Innovation was founded in 2013 by Paul McConnell of McConnell Johnson Real Estate, primarily as an incubator for University of Delaware Horn Program alums, including the now-national brand Carvertise. Today the space is dominated by nonprofits, including Social Contract, Dual School, Summer Collab and Best Buddies Delaware, as well as innovative businesses like The Fun Dept.
Size: About 10,000 square feet
Cost: Hot office $75/month, dedicated desk $300/month, private office $500/month
The newest coworking space on the list, with a ribbon cutting on Dec. 3, the WIN Factory is Delaware’s first Black-owned coworking space and incubator, with a mission to to level the playing field for underrepresented entrepreneurs. There are currently 15 startups in the space, including Influencers Lab Media and Pynk Print.
Coworking space fee includes membership in the Win Factory Wealth League, which means weekly workshops, access to funding opportunities and opportunities for communal investment.
Size: 4,200 square feet
Cost: Personal desk $150/month, dedicated desk $300/month, private office $600/month
Founded by the University of Delaware and DuPont with support from the State of Delaware, Delaware Innovation Space is a collaborative lab space that give biotech entrepreneurs access to top facilities and peer scientists. Located on the Experimental Station campus, the Innovation Space is a STEM startup incubator with some big names attached, including Incyte and Prelude Therapeutics, and major up-and-comers like W7 Energy.
Size: 100,000 square feet of lab space, 155 private/shared offices
Cost: $2,500/month for a private lab pod
1201 N. Orange St., also known as One Commerce Center, is a multi-use building housing traditional offices (including IncNow), virtual office services, residences and The Hub, Stat International’s coworking space. Unlike The Mill, with its free beer and startup culture, The Hub’s demographic is companies and sole proprietors looking for small private offices.
Size: 1,200 square feet
Cost: Prices vary from $20/day to $180/month
Delaware doesn’t have WeWork, but we do have Regus – a multinational company offering pay-as-you-go “hot desking” and long-term desk leasing at the Brandywine Building in downtown Wilmington and Christiana Corporate Center in suburban Newark.
Cost: At the Newark site, the rental price starts at $11/day office space; at downtown Wilmington it’s $8/day coworking space, $9/day office
The New Castle County Chamber of Commerce offers a small business incubator, including low-cost startup office space, mentorships, seminars and other amenities. Located on the Riverfront at 920 Justison St., the EEC has several different packages, depending on how much acceleration you need.
Size: 7,000 square feet
Cost: Range of $50 to $3,000/month
Located below the canal in New Castle County is the Middletown Business Incubator & Collaborative Workspace, or MBI, launched in 2015 with support from the Middletown Area Chamber of Commerce (MACC) Foundation. Located on North Cass near Main Street, the incubator accommodates up to 15 small businesses.
Size: 4,300 square feet
Cost: Professional desk space $250/month, semi-private office $450/month, private office $600/month
Launched in October 2016, DTP is a wet lab incubator located on the 272-acre site of the old Chrysler assembly plant in Newark now known as University of Delaware’s Science Technology and Advanced Research (STAR) Campus. Residents include the Delaware Bioscience Association and Green Line Business Group.
Size: 10,000 square feet
Just off of I-95 in Newark you’ll find an unassuming office park with flex leasing plan for growing companies.
Size: 185,000 square feet
Cost: Price may vary (structure to fit budget, flexible lease terms)
Think of BioDome on the Astra Zeneca campus on Route 202 as DelawareBio’s collaborative space for meetings, seminars and networking. It’s not a space to keep a desk, so much as an alternative to Brew Ha Ha for meeting clients and giving presentations.
Cost: Access to the BioDome is a perk of DelawareBio members (membership cost is based on company stats); if you work for a member company, it’s free.
The Philly-based makerspace opened its Wilmington location in the Creative District in 2017. Members can take classes and have access to a high-tech wood shop, 3D printers, laser cutters and a robotics lab to create product prototypes and do creative work.
Size: 10,000 square feet
Cost: $55/month community (three days), $99/month flex (eight days), $199 to $299/month unlimited
While an art gallery may seem out of place among the tech incubators and wet labs, the Hockessin-based RH Gallery is also a coworking space for artist entrepreneurs to create and built businesses in the art world.
Cost: Contact the gallery for information.
Did we miss anyone? Let us know about coworking hubs and other nontraditional work spaces here.
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RealLIST Connectors: Meet the 75 leaders building Delaware’s innovation community
Coworking space CSC Station is on track for an October opening
How The Mill is keeping the coworking model alive amid COVID-19
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