Alt.Biz brings coworking space to the MoRA area


“A startup company comes here with a great idea. They are working on some kind of concept for a technology platform or some type of food business, and we can come alongside them and maybe provide counsel, maybe provide some capital, maybe become partners. Jason Tuttle, Nova Capital

Coworking is a new phenomenon. With coworking, people who work from home can go into an office and sit around other people working. Thanks to computers, internet connections, and eventually flexible bosses, more and more people have been living the dream working from home.

I work from home. I can confirm I no longer deal with traffic, I sleep in later, I can catch up on my laundry in the middle of the day, no one steals my lunch, and I wear shorts. Every. Single. Day. Why would I ever pay money to deal with all of those problems again? It is a great setup… for awhile. Until your only personal contact throughout the day is with whoever works the register at your lunch place. There becomes no divide between work and home, finishing up work on Sunday night isn’t out of the ordinary, you are running out of shorts, and you are becoming stir crazy from being at home all day, every day.

Coworking solves this problem. Anywhere from a few hours to five days out of the week, you can make a shorter commute, dress like an adult, get out of your home, and interact with other professionals. Coworking provides a bit of structure and removes the distraction of midday chores. The trendy idea is big in South End and Uptown, but MoRA has just added their first coworking space.

IMG_6293 Nearly two years ago, Nova Capital purchased the Quorum Business Park across from the Walmart Neighborhood Market on Independence Boulevard. One building of the 210,000 square-foot, 19-acre facility with access to the McAlpine greenway is dedicated to coworking. In the last two months, they transformed a former call center into an open, collaborative coworking space now named Alt.Biz. Jason Tuttle of Nova Capital explained why he wanted to add a coworking space: “A lot of it is to generate activity. I was working from home and it was terrible. Then I was working in an office by myself, and it was terrible.” Nova Capital hopes to have startup businesses develop and move into larger spaces, and they are also looking for new companies to invest in. “We aren’t as sexy as the [coworking spaces] Uptown, but I think it is like a one stop and grow,” says property manager Antonia Logan. She sees the upside in growing roots and developing startups with the Quorum Business Park and other business owners.The venture capital firm started six years ago when they purchased most of the adjacent shopping center on Independence Boulevard and Village Lake Drive. They have since added property on Monroe Road in Oakhust, and most recently the Quorom Business Park. He calls southeast Charlotte the “next” location for a development boom, saying, “This is the next logical corridor that still has developable property that has easy access into town. Even with the construction [on Independence Boulevard], you can zip right into town. We are big evangelists for this part of town. You can get to Plaza Midwood in 10 minutes, Foxcroft in 10 minutes, the interstate in 15 minutes.”IMG_6294

 The coworking space has room for just about anything. There are conference rooms, personal offices, large open work spaces, cubicles, and large training rooms. Mr. Tuttle said, “Ideally we’d love to have a bunch of little entrepreneurial startup companies.” Tuttle envisions the space turning into something like a business incubator for startup companies. With the revitalization of the Monroe Road corridor, the Alt.Biz coworking space may fill up with startups and small businesses sooner than later.

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