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Communal Work Space For the Self-Employed Comes to Dupont

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Graduate students, start-up professionals and freelancers take note: there's a new alternative to working from your bedroom. Cove-Dupont Circle takes the sharing idea that has worked for transit (think ZipCar and BikeShare) and applies it to office space.

So, what does such a Productive Space look like? It appears (from the gallery above) to split the difference between a library and a coffee shop. It has a raised bar facing a floor-to-ceiling window which recalls the popular coffee shop floor plan. And much like a coffee shop, those plastic blue chairs at the bar may or may not actually be comfortable but the plushy armchairs probably are. Moreover, the printer/scanner in the productive space ensures the ability to stay in one spot instead of vacating and using the interminably slow machine at the printing/packaging place to scan that one document. Whether or not there's a healthy dose of power outlets is yet to be seen.

There's also a conference room (which can be reserved ahead of time if need be) and a bunch of tables set up to encourage social interaction. It looks less like a cubicle and more like the study areas of local libraries. So, if you're tired of the coffee shop's music selection, the library is too quiet and working from the couch leaves you prone to watching cartoon shows from the 1990s on YouTube to dispel the loneliness, this option might be the best of all three worlds. The drawback is that after the first trial use of the space there is a monthly membership fee of either $24 or $124 per month. Still, the Cove people clearly have faith that this Productive Space setup will gain more promoters as a 14th Street space is already planned for later this month. Plus, they're providing the coffee.