South Lake Tahoe coworking space Cowork Tahoe completes expansion

Sculptures by local artist Malcolm Tibbetts give Cowork Tahoe a unique look.

Sculptures by local artist Malcolm Tibbetts give Cowork Tahoe a unique look.

Lake Tahoe's largest co-working space just got a little larger.

Cowork Tahoe recently completed an expansion that will allow the space to host more businesses in South Lake Tahoe.

The coworking space, previously known as Tahoe Mountain Lab, first opened in 2014. In 2016 it moved into the former Tahoe Daily Tribune building after 10 months of renovations.

Coworking is a growing industry that allows private businesses, nonprofits and individuals to work in shared office spaces. Cowork Tahoe boasts being the first to open at the lake. In the years since, several other spaces have opened around the lake.

“The idea of a coworking space is sharing resources with everyone else in the building,” said co-founder Jamie Orr.

The space offers day passes, part-time memberships, reserved desks in open-space and private offices.

“We're giving people flexibility in how they rent or lease,” said co-founder David Orr.

Earlier this summer, they completed a 1,100-square-foot expansion that added five private office spaces and one phone booth. The expansion was the brainchild of co-owner Bernard Creegan, who saw the need for more space.

“We wanted to optimize this parcel and meet the demand we've been seeing for private office space,” Jamie Orr said.

Much of the clientele are people who work for companies in the Bay Area but want the Tahoe lifestyle. Other people in the cowork space are vacationers who want to be able to work on their vacation.

The team wanted to do the expansion in summer 2018 but they weren't able to get all the permits until October.

They broke ground May 1 and completed the project in July, three weeks ahead of schedule.

Eagle Protect, a New Zealand nitrile disposable glove company, occupied two private offices in the original space.

They moved into the new offices Aug. 12 and they now occupy two offices and share a third office for storage.

“We have privacy but can still get back into the thick of it,” said Eagle Protect President Steve Ardagh.

Their old offices were next to the main entrance and lobby so there was constantly activity outside their door.

Creegan is excited to be able to give them and other businesses more privacy.

In addition to the offices, the expansion has also included landscaping and re-paving the parking lots.

The new landscaping is a welcomed improvement, Ardagh said.

Part of the landscaping includes a picnic area that had been neglected for years and tenants can access the area through doors at the end of an expanded hallway.

The final piece of the expansion is the north parking lot, which will be redone next year.

The team of co-owners is excited about the effect the expansion will have on the neighborhood.

“More people in this area means more people at restaurants and businesses,” said David Orr.

“The more people who live near means less people on the road,” Jamie Orr added.

Creegan said he has seen the rehabilitation of Harrison Avenue not just with the expansion of Cowork Tahoe, but the remodel of existing buildings and new tenants moving onto the street.

Ardagh, who has been in Cowork Tahoe since the beginning, is excited to see the growth internally.

“At the water bottle refill station, my goal when I first moved in was to be the 2,000th bottle saved and now we're at nearly 40,000,” Ardagh said.

Creegan does not see any further expansions in the future but is happy with the current state of the space.

“Part of the justification of the expansion is how great the community is,” Creegan said. “There's a real community of people who interact and help each other thrive.”


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