Co-working spaces could play a key role in the post-pandemic world of work—if they can survive the shutdown

The space at Groundswell Coworking in Simcoe, Ont. Groundswell Coworking

When the COVID-19 pandemic forced the temporary closure of the Okanagan coLab co-working space in Kelowna, B.C., its 150-strong membership dropped by just five per cent.

The drop was minor, because the space suddenly became “a life raft” for the community that used it to stay connected, and to learn together how to traverse uncharted waters, said Shane Austin, who runs the coLab. As a result, the 10-year-old space had to very quickly figure out how to “create digital experiences that are like co-working spaces, that can help nurture creativity and belonging.”

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