When I recently visited Laundry on Lawrence, I was trying to build a greater connection between the historic function of the building and its newly revised concept. For over 120 years the northwest corner of 27th and Lawrence St. was used as a laundry. After several fires, many physical transformations and a recent change of ownership, the facility has been washed clean of its original function. Still engrained though in the name and some of the physical features is the suggestion of Laundry on Lawrence’s past.
Newly opened in January of this year, the project is the latest completed venture of The Space Creators. If you’ve yet to hear of them, they are responsible for creating a handful of creative “micro-communities” throughout Denver. Putting a twist on local real estate, they have developed the ability for local start-ups to have the support and consultation they need to thrive. By nature and by design, this collaborative work environment results in a greater collection of professional resources for everyone involved. As Brian Smith (President of The Space Creators) showed me, there are a number of additional features made available to tenants which better equip them to face the challenges of starting a business.
At a beginning price of $325 per month, individuals or organizations can acquire a space at Laundry on Lawrence, along with added benefits like an on-site photography studio, presentation/meeting space, a laptop bar, galleries, a lounge and more. As Brian stressed on my visit, one of the most valuable assets of working in the space is the networking and the creative energy that spills over between the occupants. There are over 25 studios with a diverse range of occupants, including artists, a yoga studio, a black box theatre, and even a meeting space for Comic Con.
Perhaps one of the best features of the concept is the integrity behind it all. The Space Creators are not just selling space, they are investing in local creativity. Coaching of basic survival skills for individuals who are new to business and additional reinforcement resources are also rolled into the package. It’s not just a formal work space for people to get started, it’s a support system that offers your venture (and you) the ability to reach a new professional level. There is a real focus on fostering community from within, but it doesn’t stop there either. The addition of Laundry on Lawrence to RiNo has provided the neighborhood with new meeting space, public art walks and a community theatre. Overall, it’s an asset that strengthens creative business, but that also secures (and furthers) the role that the neighborhood plays in Denver’s larger creative culture. A place once accustomed to washing and drying clothes is now, instead, dripping with imagination and innovation.
To learn more about the spaces and communities created by The Space Creators, visit www.thespacecreators.com