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New business reflects the changing workplace

CMAP-TV pairs up with the Satellite Centers to provide an innovative work environment
Josh Young with CMAP talks to guests in the studio.
Overview of the new workplace. Smaller offices will line the left wall.

San Benito County nonprofits and local leaders toured a new co-working office opening in downtown Gilroy this week. Once a bank and then a pool hall, the large building has been re-purposed into an accessible facility that could be useful for all manner of workers.

CMAP TV, a technology-oriented nonprofit that serves San Benito County and South Santa Clara County, has partnered with The Satellite Centers to create Greenhouse Coworking. It is the second facility the Community Media Access Partnership has launched with Satellite Centers. Another Greenhouse Coworking Space was opened in Santa Cruz County in January 2016.

Several individuals or small businesses have already signed up for office space at the corner of Fifth and Monterey streets in Gilroy. Becca King Reed, the center’s director, stated in an announcement, “Whether you want to escape the commute or avoid distractions at home, co-working helps people to increase their productivity and quality of life.”

The pricing, available online, covers anything from a half hour of internet access to renting a small office. Private office prices ranged from $225 for a private office five days per month to as much as $950 a month for a four-person private office with unlimited use. Members can have 24-hour access to the building for $225 per month. Students building a freelance career or someone starting up a business can use the address, rent a storage locker or hold an event using the conference room, depending on their pocketbook.

The facility is designed to benefit young professionals, small business owners or individuals who could use a work environment and office equipment but don’t want the full expense of buying it all. It is also as social place, where networking can happen. The facility can serve many people, all working at different times.

“In a recent industry survey, over 80 percent of the respondents said that co-working had helped them to expand their professional network, feel more motivated at work, and increase their happiness,” King Reed explained in the announcement. 

CMAP-TV serves San Benito County by offering video and technology training as well as providing professional level video production. San Benito County, San Juan Bautista and Hollister use the nonprofit’s services for meeting and government coverage. The new location in Gilroy has a full production studio and editing facility that CMAP members can use.  

Community Coordinator, Raul Ceja, stated in the release, “This is not just an office space, it’s a community space. We want to grow a vibrant community of co-workers that benefits individuals, businesses, and the community at large.”

San Benito County nonprofits and local "opinion leaders" were invited to visit the new building over the past week. After touring the site, San Benito County resident, Valerie Egland said, "I would think that this type of thing would be valuable for San Juan Bautista, Hollister and the county in general, especially since the new library with a media bank is so far into the future." 

The tour was a chance to get familiar with a joint funding concept, check out CMAP's new location and explore a design meant to serve rapidly changing communities. 

 

About:
Leslie David (Leslie David)

Leslie David is a Bay Area independent reporter/producer and is a BenitoLink founding board member. She has produced for radio, television, newspaper and magazines in both California and Wyoming. She was with KRON-TV News in San Francisco as camera-woman, editor and field producer, where she won the Commonwealth Club's Thomas Storke Award with Linda Yee for their series on the Aids Epidemic. She started as a small market news reporter shooting her own 16mm film at KEYT-TV Santa Barbara. Leslie lives on a ranch with her family in San Benito County.

Comments

Obviously, a Gilroy location location for this type of operation is going to have little impact on Hollister, but before we have a lot of comments attacking a nonprofit or not-for-profit sucking business out of the for-profit sector let's be realistic.  Employees in the nonprofit sector like their paychecks as much as anyone else and they will do what they need to do to try and keep their employer solvent and prosperous because it's good for their paychecks.  The term is self-interest.

The private sector could have done this if they wanted to, obviously they did not want to.  It's been reported that we have 300 nonprofits in San Benito County (I have not confirmed that), if true the reason is we do not have enough for-profit businesses.

If someone wants to try this in Hollister with its limited population (Gilroy pop. est. 52,000) no one is stopping them and they now have a business model.

Marty Richman

 

(Replying to myself ) It's very difficult to come up with the number of "active" nonprofits in San Benito County.  Leslie David thought it was about 50, that's certainly in the ballpark depending on how you define active and not counting those whose operations are dormant, narrow, or very restricted based in their classification.  The entire universe of county non-profits is much larger, but that's really not what we are talking about here.

“Talking to yourself is okay. Answering back is risky.” ― Brian Spellman

Marty Richman

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