When you think of coworking, you might think of large businesses like WeWork of Regus that thrive in urban environments like Boston and New York City. Thanks to the changing work culture, coworking and flexible office spaces have seen expansive growth over the past few years. With this expansion, the coworking industry is quickly spreading to the suburbs. Many large companies have taken notice of how well the flexible office structure is working for both employee happiness and productivity levels. Outsourcing work to the suburbs not only cut costs for large companies, but also saves small businesses, start-ups, and independent workers money, time, and frustration. Still, many professionals are still tied to the city. When considering a flexible office space, deciding between the city and the suburbs is likely one of the first questions you should ask yourself. But what factors should you take into consideration? And how do you decide what space you’ll thrive in?
Take into Consideration Commute Time
If you are looking to boost productivity and save time in your new flexible office space, try cutting commute time. If you live in the suburbs, the best way to do that is by joining a space in a neighboring suburban area. Did you know, Boston has one of the worst commutes of all major US cities, with only “13% of people being able to reach their destination in 30 minutes by vehicle or public transport”? What’s worse? For those who rely on public transportation, like the MBTA, for example, only 8% can reach Boston within 30 minutes. (Curbed Boston)
One of the biggest perks of working in the suburbs is the commute (or lack thereof.) Avoiding a long commute saves you time, money, and sanity, which is why many people are looking to set up their offices in suburban communities. Take our Canton office, for example: we are a five-minute drive from routes 93, 95 and 24; an ideal location for anyone who wants to spend more time being productive and less time commuting.
Working in the suburbs also means you likely still have access to the city when you do need it, especially if you’re looking on the South Shore. So close to Boston, there is no need to commute every single day — save those long drives for the occasional meeting in the city.
How Much Space Are You Looking For?
If you are interested in a shared space, like coworking where you work in communal rooms equipped with tables, desks, couches, etc., chances are, there are many more options in the city. Needing minimal space gives you a lot more options when it comes to deciding where you’d like to work. For example, if you don’t need a dedicated desk or private office space, you can try a membership that allows you to utilize multiple different spaces, rather than just one. These options are much more common in urban areas, so if workspace flexibility is important to you, the city might be the way to go.
However, if you’re looking for a private office, options in the suburbs tend to be more flexible, cheaper, and bigger. The city is densely populated, filled with other professionals looking for space to get work done or set up their businesses. What does this mean for you? Less space and less options available.
What Fits Your Lifestyle?
There is no denying that sometimes the city is just more exciting than the suburbs; its no wonder that many young people early in their careers are drawn toward city environments rather than suburban towns. If you don’t mind a long commute or are eager to live that city-life, an office in an urban area like Boston or New York is a great choice. However, the city lifestyle is not for everyone. Many professionals find the suburbs to be more peaceful, more friendly, and a better environment overall. Plus, because many people move to the suburbs with their families, suburban areas are great diverse communities for people of all ages to enjoy.
Overall, deciding between the city or the suburbs is a very personal decision, depending on individual lifestyle, wants, and needs.