A 40,000 sq ft coworking space has sprung up inside the Contemporary Art Centre in downtown New Orleans.
AIA award-winning practice Eskew+Dumez+Ripple designed the workspace – dubbed The Shop – which occupies the top two floors of the art centre, inside the century-old Besthoff warehouse building.
The space is operated by developer, The Domain Companies. Says co-founder Matt Schwartz: ‘When the opportunity came about to be within the CAC, it really was a perfect fit. Both in terms of just being in one of the city’s best cultural institutions, surrounded by many others, and because of the physical space we had to work with.’
Industrial features, including exposed pinewood beams, raw brick walls and huge arched windows, give the coworking space its character.
‘This renovation preserves the classic Warehouse District architecture of the existing building while incorporating modern elements,’ says the practice.
A huge architectural staircase connects the two levels. Furniture across The Shop’s common areas – comprising a full kitchen and bar, ‘living room’ style spaces and a rooftop terrace – is curated by the firm’s interior designer Jill Taylor-Mayo. She worked with local design studio AOS to gather its diverse collection, which includes pieces from auction site 1stDibs.
The Shop is the only coworking space in a gallery in New Orleans, so it’d be remiss if the hub wasn’t teeming with artworks. Walls are hung with paintings by Ellen Macomber and photography by Eric Nunez, while Californian duo CYRCLE (aka David Torres and David Leavitt) painted murals in the fourth floor common area.
After soft-launching late last year, the coworking space is now fully operational and is targeting arts and cultural-based businesses. The 400-desk space is also home to tech startups and incubators including The Idea Village, NO/LA Angel network and Greater New Orleans Inc. Membership packages are available in multiple tiers starting from $325 a month, as well as single and 10-day passes.