Shared workspaces are nothing new. Small business owners have been taking advantage of the concept for many years now. It’s a great way to save money, and tenants have built up a great environment that’s conducive to modern office life, adding amenities to spaces like food options, pool tables, etc. Most shared spaces are built inside of warehouse-like facilities, and the small business owners can thrive off of the entrepreneurial environment and constant flow of fresh faces.
However, most of these small business owners who work in shared spaces will tell you that there are some challenges. First and foremost, the walls used in the construction of the spaces are pretty small, so privacy has been an issue.
BakkeRij, a company out of Haarlem in the Netherlands, has solved this issue by reusing shipping containers to build their shared office spaces. The steel walls and space between containers has solved the sound privacy issue.
This community of shipping containers was built inside of a former, 16,000 square foot bakery and includes 60 units. The way the containers are stacked has really created an exciting workspace, where tenants can interact and get their work done. Each container has its own ventilation system, as well as power and data connections. One end of each container is completely walled in glass, giving the spaces an open feel and inspiring the tenants by showing what’s going on inside with each respective business.
The benefits of using shipping containers inside a bigger warehouse space are plentiful. By stacking them inside a bigger space, the containers don’t need to be individually insulated or modified, and for that reason, it’s very energy efficient. The “common areas” can be kept at a more natural temperature, as each container has it’s own climate control options.
Then containers can be moved as needed, so the layout is flexible. If for some reason, the warehouse needed to be used again, the containers can be removed completely and reused for their original purposes.
Perhaps one of the best benefits for tenants is the price. Rent starts around $600 US per month. That’s a good bit cheaper than traditional office space. Plus, there are no long-term lease agreements, so if something happens with the overall economy, tenants can be out at a moment’s notice, and the space can be used for its original intended purpose.