Common Desk is Expanding to North Carolina!
2019 has been a year full of “firsts” for Common Desk. To start, we raised our first round of funding this year. In addition, we expanded outside of Dallas-Fort Worth for the first time–landing into two token Texas markets, Austin and Houston. But the firsts don’t stop there. Before 2020 hits, we’ve got one more major announcement to pack into 2019 (drum roll, please):
For the first time in Common Desk history, we’re officially heading outside of the great state of Texas, and we’re setting our sails for the East Coast–starting with Raleigh, North Carolina!
We know what you’re probably thinking–that’s a LOT of growth in one year. And North Carolina? Seems random. Well, you’re not wrong on all fronts; so we’ll elaborate. We’ve been growing at a more rapid pace than ever because, in our 7 years of operation, we’ve seen the need for experiential (and enjoyable) workspace only rise, regardless of competition being more present than ever. Not only that, we’ve also seen a really big need for landlords to find a coworking brand who can come alongside them as a partner and contribute to all the amazing things they’re already doing in their buildings, developments, and properties.
So what does North Carolina have to do with any of this? We’ve always been passionate about hospitality, and specifically, southern hospitality (there’s just something about it, you know?). North Carolina is a state that’s full of southern hospitality, and we really believe our brand is going to resonate strongly here because of that. Raleigh will be the first city we touch down in within the state, and we love it for the way it encompasses both big city business and small town connectivity. We take work seriously, but we also have a passion for human connection, and we think Raleigh and Common Desk are truly going to be a match made in heaven.
Our first North Carolina space will open within Raleigh’s East End Market development in partnership with Workplace Hospitality Management, our regional development partner in the Carolinas, and East End’s developers: SLI Capital, a real estate investment management firm targeting investments in high-growth markets in the Southeastern United States, and Atlas Stark, a Raleigh-based real estate development firm.
East End Market, located just a few minutes from both Downtown and Midtown Raleigh, is commencing construction in the next few weeks and will feature approximately 65,000 sq ft of adaptive re-use space ranging from entertainment to F&B to office when completed in 2020. Our first home in North Carolina, Common Desk – East End Market, will open in the heart of this emerging Raleigh destination, within 28,423 sq ft of former industrial space (what was once an old railroad warehouse will soon be a beautiful coworking destination, and we are literally giddy about it).
North Carolina is a state where southern hospitality is appreciated, and we expect our brand to strongly resonate here because of this. Raleigh is the perfect place for us to establish our brand first in North Carolina, because it’s a city that’s found the perfect balance of being just big enough to make waves and just small enough to be known. We see Raleigh as a chance to do something big and hopefully become a go-to coworking brand for professionals across North Carolina.Nick Clark, Founder and CEO of Common Desk.
When approaching a new market, we always choose to establish our brand from a neighborhood that’s cool, gritty, and alternative–one that resonates well with freelancers and creatives. Raleigh’s East End Market is perfect for this, and it reminds us so much of our Deep Ellum, Dallas roots. It’s rare to have a cool and creative mixed use district that’s this conveniently located, but East End achieves that. Being dubbed “the intersection of home and happy hour” (was reading that music to your ears or is that just us?), East End Market feels like one of the most exciting new areas in the city, and we’re thrilled to be a part of what’s happening here.
Now, let’s talk about the design of this smokin’ hot space. Common Desk – East End Market was intentionally designed to preserve the warehouse aesthetic it boasts, but with a design-forward feel. Our in-house interior design team is accomplishing this by applying natural materials and warm finishes throughout the space, while layering in art curated from local Raleigh artists.
As far as membership and amenities go, Common Desk – East End Market will offer shared desk areas located throughout the industrial building, six conference rooms with unlimited usage for members, private offices for teams ranging in size from one to nine, and enterprise suites available for larger teams ranging in size from 13-20. Our coffee cohort, Fiction Coffee, will also be present in the space to service Raleigh members the specialty coffee drinks it’s come to be known for, right from the heart of the space. Raleigh members will have the ability to use Common Desk’s app and technology to book conference rooms and order handcrafted Fiction lattes or a local favorite from Trophy Brewing on tap (did someone say happy hour?).
Common Desk – East End Market’s expansive shared desk areas will also be able to moonlight as an event space for hosting networking events, happy hours, and meet-ups. And if you enjoy green space in your work environment, you’ll really love this part: a bright, tree-filled courtyard–which is inspired by the oak-lined streets of Raleigh–will be found at the heart of the space, and it’s going to be a workday haven for all. Other amenities will include a shared kitchen, a wellness room, an outdoor patio, and a wide variety of conference rooms. Multiple skylights, breeze block partitions, and plant installations will contribute to this courtyard look and feel by blurring the line of interior to exterior.
The Common Desk model is superior to many others in the space due to the elimination of mismatched asset and liability duration present with the traditional coworking lease structure. Common Desk operates more like a partner than a tenant and has embraced the East End Market brand. The East End neighborhood is a cultured food, beverage, and lifestyle destination which will greatly benefit from the energy Common Desk provides.Bryan Kane, managing partner of SLI Capital
East End Market as a development has a really bright future, and we as a coworking brand truly cannot wait to be a part of all the game-changing things that are going to happen in this growing Raleigh community.
As far as this Carolina expansion as a whole goes, we have big dreams to expand to other markets and neighborhoods, both inside the Triangle and across North Carolina into other great cities. Stay tuned for more news and updates coming for the East Coast soon.
We can’t wait to scuff up our Texas boots and get to know all that North Carolina has to offer. Common Desk – East End Market will launch in the fall of 2020, so head to its location page to subscribe to receive updates for Raleigh and NC as a whole!
Construction might still be a few months out, but in the words of the great James Taylor, “I’m gone to Carolina in my mind.” <3 We’ll see you soon, Raleigh!