On October 4, Knoll, along with dealer partner CI Select, hosted a presentation based on a recent white paper titled “The Rise of Co-working: A growing workplace movement.” The event, part of the annual St. Louis Design Week, was held at the CIC@4240 St. Louis, a co-working space located within the city’s Cortex district. Since 2002, the Cortex Innovation Community has been an anchor for the St. Louis startup ecosystem, a concentrated neighborhood of bioscience, technology research, and development.
In the presentation, Roth outlined the inevitable trend towards co-working spaces in contemporary office design, one found not only in tech-centric cities in the United States but in smaller communities across the country and around the world. “The number of spaces and the number of people working in co-working spaces continues to see tremendous year-over-year growth,” she said.
For companies considering switching to the new model, Roth offered three key benefits: the attraction and retention of employees, the fostering of creativity and innovation, and the maximization of office space in a professional world that is increasingly virtual and mobile.
“Co-working isn’t just for independent workers,” Roth explained. “Larger organizations are locating employees in co-working spaces for a variety of reasons, including to foster creativity, spark new ideas, network, recruit and learn how to emulate the ‘startup vitality’ present in these spaces in order to bring that energy back to their corporate locations.”
The presentation was followed by a tour of AB Mauri, a global supplier of food and baking ingredients that also has its North America headquarters located in the @4240 building. The new office space of AB Mauri includes a 5,000 square-foot bakingHUB and pilot fermentation facility used to test the quality of ingredients being developed.
The tour was led by Eileen Quintin Hamburg, president of the firm Quintin Design Resources. “They wanted a modern and open environment to reflect their forward-thinking products and the innovation community they are a part of,” Hamburg said of the design brief, “but with a touch of rustic flare to give a ‘baking at home’ feeling.”