There’s a new co-working space in Muskoka that could change how some small businesses operate, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Muskoka Collective is a 7,200-square-foot space located in the old fire hall on Dominion Street in Bracebridge. It has 4,000 square feet of common space and offers a number of benefits including safe meeting space, printing capabilities, telecommunications, 360-degree video and audio conferencing, WiFi, and parking.
Businesses in Muskoka are facing many challenges right now with respect to COVID-19. Industries have been hit hard and adapting to the “new normal” in rural areas is even more challenging with limited access to high-speed internet and reduced social connectivity for employees, freelancers, and sole proprietors.
Businesses looking for safe and flexible solutions to continue their business operations during the COVID-19 pandemic, may find the solution in a membership or office space at the Muskoka Collective co-working facility, says owner Kate Kerr.
There are many advantages to a co-working space:
Lower your office overhead. Muskoka Collective has flexible month-to-month plans that offer members all of the professional amenities a large office would have at a lower cost per month, including reception area, utilities, high-speed internet, and snow removal. Membership options start as low as $224 per month for shared spaces and up to $1,200 per month for a private office.
De-densify your corporate office space to give your team or staff members more room. “A lot of businesses might not have the space to allow for safe distancing,” notes Kerr. Dedicated desk areas at Muskoka Collective provide teams the space they need to work and collaborate at safe distances in an open environment. In addition, the facility offers members 2,500 square-feet of common area to work and collaborate at safe distances.
Co-working can provide a small business or sole proprietor with networking opportunities even as they continue to work from home. “I have worked from home for many years and it can be great, but there comes a time where it’s nice to get out of the house a few days a week or have a professional environment in which to meet clients,” says Kerr. “Some of our freelance and small business members like to come in a few days a week to connect with other members and meet clients, utilize the high-speed internet, and then work from home the remaining days. Co-working gives them the flexibility and benefits of both worlds.”
Seasonal residents can avoid the commute to Toronto. If connectivity at your cottage doesn’t cut it, there’s no need to go all the way back to the city for business. Muskoka Collective offers the ability to conduct virtual meetings or a quiet place to work.
Coworking can take the stress out of business operations. We focus on the office management so that our members can focus on their business.
– Kate Kerr, Muskoka Collective
Members of Muskoka Collective are a community of professionals with diverse skill sets, experiences, and perspectives. “It really doesn’t matter what industry you are in or the size of your business,” says Kerr, noting that Muskoka Collective members range from creatives to professional services like accounting and waste management. “We have variety of memberships for everyone and we are seeing entrepreneurs from all over Muskoka.”
Muskoka Collective is excited about its growth over the last month and will continue to focus on growing its membership slowly so that all members continue to feel safe coming into the space as they follow COVID-19 protocols. They adhere to all local public health guidelines, have extra cleaning protocols, and ensure members wear masks in common areas, with screening and temperature checks prior to entry.
“Opening our coworking facility during a global pandemic has had it’s challenges,” said Kerr, “but we see great value in the service we are providing for the business community.”
For more information on Muskoka Collective, visit muskokacollective.ca.
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