Ed. note: The HUB is a 3p Partner
By Priscilla Burgess
Do you live in the East Bay? Maybe work for a company that is busy destroying the environment both here and abroad? Perhaps you dream making a contribution to healing our earth and its people and all its living creatures rather than harming them. You have some ideas but don’t have any way to make them real. Now you — and many others just like you — will soon have a place where you can meet and connect with people with similar goals.
A new HUB is opening in Oakland. The temporary, pop-up space will be opening at the end of May at 1423 Broadway. The permanent home will be at 2323 Broadway and with your help, it will be a magical place where people with impossible dreams can meet others determined to make the impossible, possible. One of the Oakland co-founders, Lisa Chacón, braved the San Francisco HUB after starting a sustainability consulting company, hoping to find others to help, share or support her dreams. Her experience at the San Francisco HUB was so wonderful that she was inspired to join with others to create a HUB Oakland that would be even bigger and offer more services.
Co-working is a major aspect of HUB Oakland. The shared workspace is made up of like-minded individuals rather than the staff of one company. You may be sitting next to a butterfly expert or the HUB’s lawyer or the perfect partner for your yet-to-be-created nonprofit or startup. The atmosphere of co-working creates a serendipitous community where ideas spark off new solutions.
Co-working spaces range from a spot to plunk your laptop to small private offices that can house a fully formed business. There will be space for classes and for artists, there will be performance space and an art gallery. The HUB will also feature a communal kitchen and cafe, meeting and conference rooms, private phone rooms and 16,000 square feet of space for members to conspire, collaborate, and build their ideas for change.
In addition to co-working space, there will be workshops that address the needs of social entrepreneurs. You can learn how to set up a B Corp or listen to a panel on food deserts and how to bring healthy food to those who need it. For everyone involved, this will be heaven on earth.
So who’s welcome in the new Oakland space? Activists, environmentalists, green building companies, artists, advocates for social justice and food justice and anyone else with a desire to make our world a better place. Techies are also welcome, but not to the exclusion of all others, as happens in some incubators. After all, even activists can use a little tech support.
HUBs are in the process of evolving. The concept started in London in 2005 as a place where thought leaders and innovators could meet and bat ideas around. “We believe there is no shortage of good ideas to solve the issues of our time. But there is an acute lack of collaboration and support structures to help make them happen. The HUB was founded to address this need.”
The goal of HUB Oakland is to pull in representatives of every segment of Oakland’s diverse population to create a vibrant, synergistic urban community. An entire city block of defunct car dealerships is being transformed to create an urban innovation cluster.
We should all be so lucky as to have a landlord like Michael Ghielmetti of Signature Properties who has been an enthusiastic supporter of the whole-block project and HUB Oakland since he first learned about it.
Here is what co-founder Edward West, says about why he is passionate about HUB Oakland:
We set out to create a space where all of our diverse communities could come together, where the social and professional can meet in a supportive and generative community. We wanted the HUB Oakland to help enable the collaboration and growth of unique and innovative people and organizations.
At the HUB, people from every profession, background and culture are brought together by one thing: a goal to create positive change in the world in a community of mutual support. There are more and more of us every day, and the HUB is a place where we can come together to help each other create new possibilities.
HUB Oakland is now entering the last week of a $100,000 Kickstarter campaign. Visit the campaign to throw a bit of fairy dust on it and perhaps a few bucks to go toward achieving their goals. The campaign ends in 6 days.
[image courtesy of HUB Oakland)
Priscilla Burgess is CEO, Co-inventor and Co-founder of Bellwether Materials, an award-winning, GIIRS-rated, triple-bottom line company that manufactures deep green building insulation made from an agricultural by-product. Before founding Bellwether Materials, she ran her own management consulting business. She has traveled all over the world, asking questions about how people work and from that, has developed several models and many opinions about the best way to grow a flourishing business.