Whether you’re a company on an extended business trip and need desks to work away from your office, or you’re a visiting freelancer or entrepreneur looking for a creative environment and the occasional meeting space, here are 4 very different coworking spaces in Chicago worth checking out.
I recently met a member of Chicago’s WeWork team. WeWork is an international network of collaborative, community-driven workspaces. He spoke about the place with such pride — it made me want to go check it out, ASAP. Companies like AirBnB, Snapchat, Under Armour, Red Bull, Adobe, Staples, and more all have remote offices here! There are actually 3 WeWork coworking spaces in Chicago: Fulton Market, River North, and Grant Park. In terms of surrounding yourself with creative people, many big companies have remote offices here.
Prices start at $45 for access to the space for one day each month through the flexible Commons program, which includes access to WeWork networking events and their own private network of members.
I would consider Platform Coworking to be one of the best coworking spaces for a freelancer (as opposed to a corporate person), because it is in more outlying Chicago neighborhoods (Wicker Park and Ravenswood) than “chain” coworking spaces like WeWork within the downtown Loop. However, if you’re a Chicago visitor staying near these hip, creative neighborhoods, this is a perfect spot to go get work done. Platform Coworking’s members tend to be individuals or small teams who stick around for months on end.
Pricing is very affordable, starting at $22 per day, plus a $6 monthly subscription fee. All plans include access to the 24/7 access, a shared conference room, printing, and coffee!
Chicago's digital hub 1871 is one of my favorite places to visit that just so happens to also be a notable coworking space. Many incredible Chicago tech companies got their start working at 1871 and collaborating with it’s innovative members. 1871 is ideal for longer-term members, but if you want to go in to check it out, join a Meetup group that meets there, visit a friend who’s a current member or contact for a tour. The massive, 75,000-square-foot facility for 1871 is in the Merchandise Mart and is a short walk to almost anything in the Loop or River North.
Individual memberships for evening/weekend shared areas start at $175 per month and go up from there for companies.
Though not a co-working space by a traditional definition, Next Door Chicago is a great community space in the Lakeview neighborhood that offers professional coaching, notable speakers, and networking events. There’s basically something going on everyday, so if you’re looking for an opportunity for professional development, this is it.
The best part? It’s free to go use their space to work with access to their internet connection. Coffee and tea will cost you extra, but it’s a small price to pay for being surrounded by hard working creatives in one of the best neighborhoods in the city. Check out great shopping and restaurants in Lakeview when you’re done!
All of these spots can be perfect for very different people. Have you been to any? Let us know in the comments!
Photos courtesy of 1871, Platform Coworking and Next Door Chicago.