In places like Detroit and Cleveland a grassroots coworking movement is welcoming minority and low-income entrepreneurs and artists.
Long Beach, California-based WE Labs just opened its second coworking space in the historic Packard Building, a Spanish Baroque-styled car showroom from the 1920s. Behind it is an empty lot, next door is an auto body shop, down the street are swanky new apartments, and a block away is the light rail. It looks like a textbook gentrification setting, but WE Labs’s clients differ from what you’d expect at mainstream, big-city coworking spaces like those in the WeWork empire. They include a bookkeeper, a mental health services nonprofit, painters, and a roller derby-themed fashion designer. Monday to Saturday, 9 a.m. – 6p.m. access is $175 per month—on the low side for coworking space in the L.A. area.