At first glance, Warragul might seem like an unlikely place to set up a coworking space. However, if you dig a little deeper, you’ll quickly find that it’s the perfect location for this kind of collaborative and affordable office type. There are a few things that make Warragul ripe for coworking:
- Strong startup and entrepreneur culture – Entrepreneurship and startups are coming up all across Gippsland, however through our involvement in this ecosystem from Startup Gippsland, we’ve seen firsthand how much stronger this community is in the Baw Baw region.
- Population growth – Baw Baw shire, in particular, Warragul and Drouin, is part of the South East growth corridor which has been deemed the fastest growing area in Australia. The population is Baw Baw is set to almost double in the next 15 years, with many young professionals and families flocking to the area for affordability, lifestyle and easy access to the city. With this population growth will come a boom of entrepreneurs, creatives, consultants and others working from home who will be looking for affordable and central office space.
- Transient population – West Gippsland, Warragul in particular, acts as a gateway for many people passing through the region. Many of this transient population are traveling for work and are often in need of a once-off space with reliable fast internet to work from. Coworking offers the perfect solution to these people who would otherwise have to work from their car, a cafe or hotel.
- Melbourne commuters – Being just 100km from Melbourne, Warragul offers people the opportunity to have an affordable property and great lifestyle, whilst still allowing them to work in the city. I used to be one of these early morning commuters, taking the 635am train to Melbourne. For those commuters who are able to work flexibly at home, coworking offers them cheap office space, free from distractions with all the amenities their city office would provide.
- Nothing quite like it – Although there are other shared office spaces in Baw Baw, these are mainly private offices with shared bathroom and kitchen facilities that you rent for medium to long terms. Coworking, on the other hand, is designed to be more collaborative and community-driven with open-plan office space, common areas like dining rooms and chill zones, and member networking events. On top of this, it’s also cheaper and more flexible as there’s no lock-in period.
All of the reasons combined make Warragul the ideal place for coworking. As the Gippsland ecosystem grows, we’re likely to see other areas like Traralgon, Korumburra and Sale also become ripe for these kinds of collaborative workspaces. Maybe this will lead to the Herd 2.0 popping up somewhere in the future!