Wall Street is *not* my favorite neighborhood. Due to the location I was not very excited, though on the plus side the commute was extremely short for me - the J straight from Williamsburg to Broad Street (15 mins) so that was a plus.
I was not very inspired by the building (55 Broad street) but I got a good laugh in the elevator when I saw that there was a placed called “The Reputation Institute” on one of the squares that light up for each floor in the elevator.
When I arrived at the Hive at 55 the receptionist was friendly and the space looked pretty busy. This was the first time we co-worked on a Thursday so that might have had something to do with the space being busier. I also learned from the receptionist that their members are pretty diverse. Although there is a big base of tech workers there are also journalists, lawyers, writers and designers who work from their space.
(New iPhone = better pictures. YESSSS!)
The Hive is one of the oldest co-working spaces in NYC.
In July 2009, Mayor Mike Bloomberg announced the MediaNYC 2020 program, a series of initiatives to support and promote the city’s media and technology industries. Included in this announcement was a “freelancer hive” offering affordable workspace to sustain small business and start-ups. In December 2009, the Hive at 55 officially opened in NYC’s Information Technology Center, 55 Broad Street, in the heart of Lower Manhattan.
The Hive is an initiative of the Alliance for Downtown New York, the business improvement district for Lower Manhattan. The Alliance provides many services that make the neighborhood a better place to live, work, and visit. With a grant from the New York City Economic Development Corporation, the Hive partners with the local community as well as the city’s greater technology and media communities, such as Pace University, the Freelancers Union, GuruLoft, Girl in Tech, the Hatchery, and others.
What I liked: Friendly vibe, the members were of varying age ranges and worked in different industries, easy commute from Williamsburg, fast internet (I plan to measure exact internet speed starting at the next place).
Lunch: The most obvious lunch spots are chains like Au Bon Pain and Pret A Manger since they are right outside the building. Just because you name a chain with a French name it does not make it better than eating at Subway.
Stone Street seems to be the closest street to the Hive at 55 with non-chain lunch options.
We had pizza at Adrienne’s Pizzabar which is on 54 Stone Street. The pizza was good (square slices) and it was pretty busy. Everyone was wearing cornflower blue dress shirts except for Martha and I.
(I was too hungry to take a picture of the pizza so you just get to see Stone Street)
On the way to lunch I got shoulder checked by a bunch of tall white men who I guess didn’t see me. There were a lot of tall white pushy men in this neighborhood. I was not surprised.
Good happy hour spots close by: I was trying to make plans to jump on the J and do happy hour in the LES but Martha (rightfully so) insisted that we stick with the format and get drinks in the immediate neighborhood so we went back to Stone Street.
Again, anything decent seems to just be on that one street.
We had cocktails at Vintry which is on 57 Stone Street RIGHT next to Adrienne’s. It was pretty decent and the crowd was mellow. Douchebag quotient was low.
Sandhya co-worked with us for the day, here she is with Martha and I at cocktails!
What could be better: I wish the workspace was bigger. The tables are quite narrow and there aren’t many loungey spaces for meetings. There is only one area with one couch. The space was just busy enough when we went but with a few more people (even 10 more) it would feel crowded.
There aren’t many places to have a phone call since the private rooms are offices or rented out for meetings, so if there are meetings happening in every room that day and you need to make some calls everyone in the space will pretty much hear what you are saying. If your job doesn’t require many phone calls or you don’t mind people hearing everything you are saying then this space could work for you. I need private space for calls since a big part of my job requires me to be on the phone.
Since they have such a diverse set of members it would be better if they could develop their member page. They did say they are working on it but right now there are only 5 people listed on the page. They mentioned it has been a challenge to get people to fill out their profiles.
To me, the list of members, knowing who belongs to the co-working space and what they work on is just as important as the physical component of the workspace.
- A wide variety of membership plans, listed below.
- The Hive at 55 has events every day of the week so it is a very social space.