Regular readers of Springwise may remember the article we wrote about 3Space in 2011. Back then, the UK-based company was helping non-profits and community projects find temporary homes in vacant commercial properties. Four years on and we are pleased to report on its latest venture, which sees the transformation of emptied bank branches into free working spaces for social enterprises, entrepreneurs and community groups. The project, Hatch, has been launched in partnership with Barclays Bank and the first ‘branch’ recently opened in Oxford.
The new community space is the first of four hubs set to open in under-utilised Barclay’s properties in 2015. Known as Hatch Oxford, it offers free desk space to non-profits and early stage local start-up businesses, as well as providing mentoring possibilities and a fully-equipped maker space in the disused bank vault — complete with sewing machines, workshop tools and 3D printer.
What other surplus assets could larger companies turn over for community use?