BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman paid a visit to B:Hive Bridgeport on Tuesday, happily meandering through the warm, downtown co-working space where about 30 entrepreneurs make their dreams come true.
“I feel like I’m in New York,” the Brooklyn native said. “It’s the way to go — to get out of the house and have a place to concentrate. It’s a great, great thing to see.”
Wyman said she’s seeing similar initiatives taking shape around Connecticut, where an increasing number of primarily young people — spurred by a stale job market or their own burgeoning creativity — are launching their own businesses.
Jordan Rabidou, a partner in The Bananaland, a design and development venture, told Wyman that he sees immense potential in Bridgeport, though friends were surprised he chose the city for work.
“I said, ‘No, you have no idea. It’s really, really cool!’” he said.
Luke Scott, one of B:Hive’s owners, told Wyman they started the shared workspace because they wanted to do something proactive in the city.
“We were trying to figure out what that was and this made sense,” he said.
B:Hive is a collaborative workspace, an antidote for those sick of trying to get a startup off the ground from a couch at Starbucks or a desk in the local library. Membership options include weekly, monthly and annual plans; pop-in rates and conference room reservations are also available.
The group also stages a monthly potluck dinner to promote socializing and networking, said manager Becca Bryan. And when one hits a wall or just needs a break, there’s usually someone else around for a lively game of ping pong in the center of the room.
Sarah Lewis, who works with Change Corps, a grassroots organizing training program for young activists, talked with Wyman about how she finds inspiration at B:Hive.
“It’s a great space,” she said.
Visit the B:Hive website for more information.
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