The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus is opening a new co-working space in the Thomas R. Beecher, Jr. Innovation Center at 640 Ellicott Street. Dubbed dig, it is yet another step in fostering entrepreneurship, creativity and collaboration.
The space is designed for those in the early stages of developing a business or an idea.dig stands for design innovation garage, a play on both the location – a former loading dock in the renovated Trico Products Corp., building, complete with a glass garage door overlooking the Medical Campus – and also on the move toward a more design-centric entrepreneurial culture. This co-working community will represent a range of creative, technical, and operational industries, driving the creation of new possibilities, new collaborations, and new partnerships.
“Opening dig ties directly to the Governor’s vision of supporting entrepreneurial culture across the state,” said Matthew K. Enstice, president & chief executive officer of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc. “dig will offer critical pieces needed by those with a young idea or business – work space, support, mentoring, and collaboration to get their business off the ground, creating more jobs and spurring the economy in our region.”
“One of our goals at the BNMC is to build a community of changemakers. We believe that happens through collaboration and innovation, and what better way to do that than creating a co-working space for people who work on the Medical Campus or those who want to be a part of what’s happening here,” said Patrick J. Whalen, chief operating officer of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc.
The design team that created dig consists of faculty from the Department of Architecture and undergraduate and graduate students from the Situated Technologies Research Group: Prof. Omar Khan, Prof. Laura Garofalo, Michael Kirschner, John Geisler, Kathryn Hobert, Philip Gusmano, Joseph Swerdlin and Nicole Halstead. dig will have “entrepreneurs-in-residence” on hand during the day to help members working on various projects, as well as a dig Curator on staff to help facilitate networking among members and develop programming for the space.
The space will be outfitted with large tables and chairs, lounge-type seating with couches and chairs, space for private calls and meetings, lockers and mailboxes, and a café. There will be an application process to join the co-work space. Anyone is eligible to apply, although membership preference will be given to those working toward social innovation. The introductory rates will range from a daily rate of $15 to all-access monthly rates of $100.
“We view this as an affordable option for entrepreneurs currently working at home, start-up companies looking to be a part of a larger community, families of patients looking for a place to work while visiting loved ones at the hospitals on the Medical Campus, a site for satellite offices – anyone looking for an environment to help foster productivity and success,” adds Whalen.
“We’re sharing cars and bikes, so it was only a matter of time before we shared space, and the Medical Campus is a perfect place to do it,” according to Creighton Randall, executive director of Buffalo CarShare. dig members will receive complimentary memberships for CarShare and BikeShare in partnership with GO BNMC, the medical campus’ initiative to make it easier for employees to choose alternatives to driving alone.
The primary membership benefit is unlimited access to really innovative people. Members receive varying amenities depending on their level, ranging from high speed wifi and color copiers, to access to the Innovation Center’s fitness center, to conference room space and free coffee. The Innovation Center is already home to 43 companies, ranging in size from one to 50 employees. Learn more at digbuffalo.org.