By Kate Snyder
Cities along the west coast were among the nation’s top coworking spaces, according to a recently released report from CoworkingCafe. California represented multiple spots on the report’s list of suburbs with the highest number of coworking spaces – with Los Angeles and Bay Area submarkets accounting for much of the highlighted suburbs. Additionally, two cities within the Seattle metropolitan area also took spots on the list.
The report, “Coworking Among Picket Fences: These Are the Top Coworking Suburbs in America,” shows that nationally, almost half – approximately 44 percent – of all coworking spaces can be found in the suburbs. According to the report, the pandemic helped shift workforces from urban areas to suburbs, and as a result, many suburbs have welcomed the need for flexible workspace. Overall, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and Miami were the leading metros of the study, each coming in at more than 130 coworking spaces spread across various suburbs.
At the metro level, Los Angeles had the highest number of suburban coworking spaces at 361, including 91 in the country’s leading suburb, Irvine, according to the report. The Los Angeles area is also one of the metros where coworking spaces are more common in the suburbs than they are in the city proper. Part of the reason for that, the report argues, is the makeup of Los Angeles’ top industries.
“LA’s predominant industries – entertainment, technology and aerospace – continue to fluctuate in terms of staffing and hybrid schedules,” the report states. “Plus, these industries are difficult (if not impossible) to replicate in a work-from-home environment.”
After Irvine, Newport Beach was the next Los Angeles suburb on the list with a total of 25 coworking spaces for its residents. Pasadena came in third in the Los Angeles metro area with 16 flex workspaces.
In the Bay Area, the San Francisco metro had three suburbs that logged at least ten coworking spaces – overall the region totaled 108 suburban coworking spaces. Oakland was the region’s top suburb with 24 shared workspaces, and it was followed by Berkeley and San Mateo with 13 and 10 coworking spaces, respectively, according to the report. Like Los Angeles, the San Francisco metro also had more coworking spaces in the suburbs than in the main city – researchers found a gap of 40 coworking spaces between the area’s suburbs compared to its central city.
In the San Francisco suburbs, Regus, WeWork and Pacific Workplaces were cited as the top coworking operators in terms of the amount of spaces offered.
“Smaller coworking operators are the ones that check a higher total number of properties than the big players in the San Francisco suburbs market,” the report states. “While Regus, WeWork and Pacific Workplaces are the top ones with the most spaces in the area, the mix between coworking spaces belonging to operators like Oakstop, Sima Spaces, Bonneville Labs and others manages to tip the balance in their favor.”
Further north, two of Seattle’s suburban markets were also included in the report. Bellevue and Tacoma came in at 12th and 14th, respectively, when compared to suburbs across the country. Bellevue had 15 coworking spaces, according to the report, and Tacoma was just behind at 14 spaces.
Another CoWorkingCafe report identified Seattle as one of the top markets when it comes to coworking. In that report, the city was named #14 as one of the leading markets in terms of total square footage and #16 in terms of the number of coworking spaces. Based on the data used in that report, the Seattle market recorded 104 flexible workspaces and 2.4 million square feet in coworking space. Comparing the average square footage per market, Seattle came in ninth out of the 25 top markets with an average of approximately 23,490 square feet.