The dirty white walls and stained blue carpets of an old Rite-Aid office building may not look like much now, but in just a few months it will be transformed into Charlotte’s newest coworking space.
Hygge Coworking, which already has locations on Hill Street outside of uptown and on Remount Road west of town, will open its third coworking space this summer in the new Camp North End development, between Statesville and Graham streets.
Hygge owner Garrett Tichy said work will start on the space soon, with plans to open as soon as June or July. While the space will look markedly different when the renovation is done, Tichy said the bones of the one-story building will remain.
“We don’t need expensive build outs and all this crazy space,” he said. “We need something that’s functional. People need a place to work. This used to be Rite-Aid’s old corporate distribution office and it has tons of office space and big open rooms and stuff. It has work that needs to be done, but we can do a lot with very traditional space.”
– The new coworking space, located at 1776 Statesville Ave., is about 10,000 square feet, significantly larger than the Hill Street (8,500) and Remount (7,600) Hygges.
– It’ll feature 20+ offices, including three- and four-office suites that larger teams and companies can rent, something other Hygge locations lack. Another thing this location has that other Hygges don’t: Offices with windows.
– There will be common work areas, including a large one in the center of the building that will have bar seating on either side. Tichy said he also likes having little work nooks, where people can break away and create a private little work space.
– There will be an area with permanent desks, for people who want more than just a flex coworking plan but don’t need full offices.
– There will also be meeting space — for members and non-members to rent — locally-roasted coffee from HEX Coffee and, of course, WiFi.
Hygge’s Remount location, which just opened in December, is already at capacity for offices, Tichy said. So he had been looking for a place to open a third location, but only if it was the right situation. Camp North End, which is being developed by ATCO, felt right, he said.
“For us, this … continues to follow the mission of staying away from uptown,” Tichy said. “Everything that Camp North End is trying to do is create a hub that serves the surrounding community. They’re not here to knock buildings down. The whole idea of repurposing and bringing value is cool, and it feels legitimately genuine.”
Tichy also wants to integrate Hygge into the local community. One way is to offer membership specials and other incentives to “anybody that has a mission that supports the North End area.” He also plans to allow teachers to use the space for free over the summer for planning and other work when schools are closed.
“One thing we have is space … and empty space to me is a complete and utter waste,” Tichy said.
Hygge joins Goodyear Arts and Junior Achievement as one of the first announced tenants in the young but massive Camp North End project. And Tichy seems to feel really good about his neighbors and the future of the area.
“It’s going to be awesome,” he said. “I feel very lucky.”
Photos: Courtesy of Hygge