Frankenstein House to Coworking Space!
Thinking back to when I first saw this house, I just couldn’t make out WHAT to think about it. I couldn’t imagine “fixing” this Frankenstein. I loved the location, I loved the idea of building a community in Central Austin anchored by the proximity to bars, restaurants, coffee shops and everything else that the North University Drag offered. Egad, but this house though!
The renovation story – still ongoing – has enough twists and turns for a whole book… Suffice to say that the previous owners completely let this place go! The walls were falling apart (literally in some sections), and the roof leaked in the back. That was noticeable in just the first few seconds. A few steps inside and you couldn’t miss how all 4 walls were painted in 4 assorted colors from who knows when, and the floors… The floors were unbelievable! I’ve never seen anything like it! Huge swaths of the foundation in the extensions were severely sloped, the worst being the main restroom. Can you imagine using that!? Yikes. The first-floor main room was at least level and featured laminated flooring… But, it wasn’t installed properly. It was more like a moonwalk with the flooring bubbling up throughout! Peculiarly, it had screws randomly throughout – they tried to fix it! ?
Windows were archaic or rotting out and the AC was as old as dirt, with all air blowing like a tornado from ONE vent! Plumbing had leaks and was completely replumbed, popcorn ceilings had to be removed, front and back extensions were completely reconstructed, electrical rebuilt from scratch, and the main stairway entirely renovated, just to name a few of the largest endeavors.
I won’t even start detailing the permitting circus either. Let’s just say the Austin permitting process was painful too…
I could go on and on, but let’s not continue flogging a dead horse…
Back to my house search: after I visited a couple other potential spots that were not even close to the ideal location, I started to coalesce around the opportunity in front of me. I could take the old house with (mostly) great bones and an ideal location, and customize a space exactly for the work-from-home person’s needs.
It was going to be a roller coaster and chock full of challenges, but I decided that this was the right course anyway!
MELD has a variety of nooks, rooms, and work stations along with 2 kitchens and break areas, multiple phone booths, conference and meeting rooms.
This floor is a friendly, casual yet professional coworking area with ambient, quiet music where you’ll be surrounded by your friends – mutually focused on productivity and collaboration:
- Highlighted by an open floorplan for coworking with modern furniture design. We boast dedicated sit to stand desks and long tables (for group coworking). All chairs are intentionally comfortable, cushioned and appropriate for those who’ll be working long hours. Each corner of the main room features alternative designs – you can plug-in and work from a different spot every day!
- There’s a kitchen stocked with coffee, tea and beer, and a lounge containing a couch, coffee table, and counter height break tables. Perfect for enjoying either lunch or hosting a friendly coffee break.
- On the first floor alone, MELD features 2 sound isolated phone booths for private conversations.
- One all-season “sun room” doubles as a conference room for 4-6 people. It’s ideally suited for small teams or individuals meeting with their clients.
- Of course, MELD has a restroom conveniently located off the main floor.
This is the quiet floor with soft, ambient white noise and less chatter. Heads down, get things done!
Featuring a variety of rooms and nooks:
- This floor contains a private office for about 6 people. Perfect for a small business or startup.
- There is a front bump-out that I am so excided about! It features built-in high-top counters with bar stools. Boasting 5 windows and a fantastic view, it is the perfect shared workspace.
- There is a conference room for 10-12 people, almost doubling in size by adding temporary seating. It is perfect for presentations and workshops. To preserve the quiet nature of the floor, this room is only available for conferencing after business hours. During the day we will feature occasional morning events and otherwise, it will function as extra hot desk seating.
- One additional sound-isolated phone booth allows for private conversations.
- Another all-season “sun room” doubles as a conference room for 4-6 people. It’s ideally suited for small teams or individuals meeting with their clients.
- There is second small kitchen with coffee and tea too.
- And a second bathroom – of course ?
Soon, this post will be updated to present actual photos of the final space!
In the meantime, LIKE US ON FACEBOOK for updates!