JOIN THE Top Secret Workshop
Unpossible is soooooo close to pushing the big red button on an exciting new project, Top Secret Workshop.
Most of the pieces are in place, with one key step left: we need a financial commitment from a critical mass of people before we sign a lease and start getting things ready.
So now’s the time. Are you ready to make this awesome thing happen?
Unpossible NL, coordinators of the RPM Challenge and Math Circles, are starting an inexpensive shared workspace for artists, creative professionals and arts administrators in downtown St. John’s. Our mission is to connect creative people and facilitate creative work and fun, so we think this would be a cool thing to do.
Where will it be?
We're planning to start it at 116 Duckworth Street.
When will it open?
Depending on everyone’s preferences and other factors we're hoping to be up and running by either March or April.
Is this really top secret? Can I tell people about this?
It’s not a secret at all! We think Top Secret Workshop is a funny name for a shared workspace that people can join. So please, pass this email along to people you like who would dig working in a creative, productive space.
Why 116 Duckworth?
Formerly the Living Planet / Flowerchild space, this building is owned by Marni Mahle, former exhibit designer at The Rooms, and she’s keen to see something like this happen there. The building is newly-renovated, and has room for the Workshop to grow. The initial main floor space unfortunately doesn’t have a private meeting space or full kitchen (we’ll get there!), but it makes up for it with other features:
- It's a really charming building!
- It’s downtown! Super close to great coffee shops, restaurants, a convenience store, and Signal Hill.
- It has enough room for 6 full-sized desks, a four-seater meeting table, window bar seats and a few comfy armchairs.
- Great view of the Narrows, with lots of natural light.
- Ceiling spot-lighting fixtures give good artificial light (not-fluorescent!).
- A private cell phone booth.
- A separate hallway that will — eventually — become an Unpossible micro shop.
How much will it cost?
There are a few options to start with (see below), and we’ve worked hard to keep prices as low as possible. Members will be able to upgrade, downgrade, or cancel with 30 days notice, and HST is extra.
$175/mo (Regularly $195/mo)
FULL TIME FLEXIBLE DESK
24 hours access. Set up at a desk, plug in your laptop, leave it there for the day if you like, then take your laptop and clear up when you're finished. This special rate is available for one year for people who sign up now as founding members.
To raise startup funds, we’re offering these prepaid discounts on our full time flexible desk memberships. Once that is complete you’ll switch to the discounted founding member rate ($175/mo) for the rest of that year, or you can choose another prepaid option.
6 MONTHS PREPAID
$950 (save $220 off the regular rate!)
3 MONTHS PREPAID
$475 (save $110 off the regular rate!)
$2,340 (Just 2 available!)
For the price of one year at our regular rate ($195/mo), this will give you a Full Time Flexible Desk membership from the moment Top Secret Workshop opens to the time it is destroyed along with the rest of the Earth in a cataclysmic asteroid collision. Or something like that.
(This offer is completely real, but it is also effectively a donation to help kickstart the Top Secret Workshop, so we can’t offer a refund if that asteroid hits sooner rather than later.) This membership comes with a boatload of gratitude and a free karaoke night at your house hosted by me, Elling.
What’s included with a membership?
All full memberships will include keys or electronic keys for the door, fiberop wi-fi, basic b/w laser printing (courtesy of Beastmaster Laserjet 5Si), heat, electricity, and good coffee.
Will there be other options for memberships, like a single-day rate or 6 days a month?
Not yet, but soon, we hope! For the time being we’re trying to get as many full-time members signed up as possible.
Why is prepaid helpful?
We’re estimating setting things up at 116 for this initial wave will cost under $7,000 for furniture, equipment and things, on top of the ongoing monthly expenses of $2,000 (rent, utilities, etc.) Getting members to sign up early and ahead of time will be essential for covering upfront costs, and seeing us through the first few months of operations.
Who’s in charge?
The Top Secret Workshop is a social enterprise run to help support Unpossible NL programming (like the RPM Challenge, Math Circles, the Stand-Up Challenge, etc.), which all work to encourage people of all ages to build creative courage. The Unpossible board of directors will be responsible for major decisions and the finances of Top Secret, and I (Elling), as the Executive Director of Unpossible, will be responsible for the day-to-day workings (I will also be working there.) But everybody who signs on for Top Secret will be an essential part of the whole thing. As members of the Top Secret, you’ll automagically be members of the Top Secret Workshop Committee. Each month you’ll be invited to a Top Secret Happy Hour Meeting to hang out and discuss and plan and deal with any issues that come up.
Is this connected with Common Ground Coworking somehow?
Common Ground Coworking have been very supportive of Unpossible since the very beginning, so we reached out to them right from the start and they’ve been super supportive of this idea. We had been thinking of working together somehow, but the new CG Staging Ground expansion (the Fortis buildings downtown) won’t quite work for Top Secret for a variety of reasons, so CG is wishing us the best. If things go really great down the road, we might be able to work with them to expand into one of those spaces — but that could be a long way down the road. In the meantime, we’re putting our heads together and finding ways to work together and share resources in ways that benefit both camps.
Will there be Unpossible events at Top Secret?
Unpossible coordinates a growing number of projects and challenges, and a lot of them involve events or meetups. We want to keep access to Top Secret as flexible as possible for everybody (accessible in the evening, weekend and late-night working) but sometimes Unpossible will be using some of the space for events like Math Circles, recording the Unpossible Show or an occasional public event like an RPM kickoff. That won’t mean you’re not welcome, it means it might be a little louder and busier than normal. The number of events will be kept to a minimum and will be scheduled for times when it is least likely people will be working (evenings or weekends) and we’ll give everyone lots of advance notice.
This sounds great! Sign me up!
If this sounds good to you, fill out this form to sign up. We need you! We need a critical mass of committed members before we can sign the lease and start setting up the space, so we’re offering discounts for multiple months to start with, and will be setting up an automatic payment system to make it easy to pay each month.
To get started, please fill out this simple membership questionnaire. Early in the new year we will send out an update to everyone with an estimated start date, how to pay, and we’ll convene the first Top Secret Workshop Member Happy Hour!
Thoughts or questions? On the fence?
Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.