Getting back to work: Coworking spaces in Anchorage offer flexibility

The pandemic has evolved the way people think about work and increased the demand for flexible workspaces.
Updated: Sep. 10, 2021 at 7:00 AM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - As people continue to live and work through the pandemic, many are returning to work but in different ways. The pandemic has evolved the way people think about work and increased the demand for flexible workspaces; fortunately, options are available in Anchorage for those getting back into their daily grind.

“I think that the pandemic has created a new world. People are not really wanting to get into long-term leases and coworking spaces offer you the flexibility to go month to month,” said Dave Welborn, general manager of Cowork by RSD. “So if you need a space, a desk or an office for a month, that’s great. If you don’t need it the following month, then you’re not obligated.”

Cowork by RSD is a new coworking space opening up in Downtown Anchorage. It’s a place that offers flexibility for people — many who may be looking to transition from working from home.

“When you work from home, there’s a lot of distractions,” said Ross Thompson, owner of Thompson Investment Properties. “You just don’t have the interaction of the adults, and that’s what you miss the most is talking to other people and that sort of thing. So you feel like you’re a little isolated.”

Before the pandemic, Thompson operated his property management company from a rented office space, then eventually transitioned to working from home.

“The disadvantages of that is you have to pay for so much extra space that you hardly ever use, like a conference room,” he said inside his new workspace. “Here, if I use a conference room, it’s just the cost for that day.”

The coronavirus pandemic initially put the brakes on coworking spaces, but now as more people become vaccinated and are looking for different options, there’s been an increase in demand.

“A lot of people are not necessarily wanting to be in full-time offices anymore, but they’re also kind of tired of being at home,” Welborn said. “So they need a place where they can come and work if they need to, and this offers the ability to be able to come, have a desk. You’ve got internet, you’ve got free Wi-Fi here.”

Welborn said a majority of the space is filling up with startups — another positive sign that Anchorage’s economy is back on the incline.

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