Hillsborough will follow the the shift away from traditional office space to coworking space when C3 Hillsborough opens downtown later this month. 

C3 Hillsborough, built on community, culture, and collaboration, opened their doors for a soft open house during Last Fridays on June 29. 

Located in the former SunTrust bank building, the space will offer different levels of membership, including daily rates for those who need a table and outlet for a couple hours, floating desk space and designated office space monthly memberships. 

Upon entry, the front window is lined with bar stool seating. Restored brick walls feature two large murals, one of Tupac, the other Einstein. Mayor Tom Stevens’ paintings line the length of the office walls.

Desks and tables are placed around the room, some standing alone, some fashioned to facilitate conversation. Open cubicles are separated by steel pieces from Prescient, the previous business to occupy the building. These height-adjustable tables, along with most of the pieces inside, will be moved to fit the need of the space as it ebbs and flows. 

The old bank vault has been repurposed into a conference room with a video call option, complete with a custom wormy maple wood table from Bull City Designs. 

Small phone booths, dubbed as the “confessionals,” are situated beside the vault. They will be soundproof, allowing focused work and private phone conversations.

Separate office rooms have been created, but the most coveted room may be the converted drive-through bank teller office. 

That is just the first floor. If this space is successful, the upstairs space – a gigantic hardwood floor space, once a general store with large paned windows overlooking Churton – will be renovated into a community office and event space as well. 

Though the space will not officially open until mid-July, this renovation has been the talk of the town.

Online Facebook community groups have long been curious of what was to come from the blue-shuttered two-story historic building that overlooks Churton Street: a boutique hotel, a new restaurant, traditional office space? Though in question, the community seemed to know the business to come was bound to be interesting with the ownership trio. Partners Gregg Pacchiana, Matt Fox and Scott Pasley teamed up after concluding that a joint effort in purchasing the space would be best. 

Fox is an owner and partner of several downtown restaurant hubs including The Wooden Nickel – and the Nickel 2.0 – LaPlace Louisiana Cookery, and the former Bona Fide Sandwich Co. spot. 

One of the two realtors with Churton Street Realty, Scott Pasley, is also the owner of Nash Street Tavern and various other West Hillsborough properties. 

Pacchiana was previously the president of Thalle Construction, a Hillsborough-based international construction company. After over 20 years in corporate construction, he sold Thalle in 2015 and took a step back to enjoy the place in which he lived, spend time with family, and instead of traveling for business, down shift and travel for pleasure or volunteer work.

This trio knew each other prior to purchasing the building in early 2016, as they were active in the community. They came together to create something “Hillsborough-centric,” Pacchiana said.

They saw the need for a space where the vibrant community of artists, writers, and small business owners could come and “hang their hat.”

The concept of a coworking space is to facilitate creativity, innovation, and sustainability. With a range of professions and expertise under one roof, this type of office space has been proven to produce a thriving network and community within itself.

Large coworking spaces such as WeWork and Regus have popped up throughout larger nearby cities such as Cary, Raleigh, and Durham. The partners behind C3 Hillsborough look to have a smaller, “neighborhood vibe,” Pacchiana said.

Instead of the corporate feel one might find at one of those large offices, this Hillsborough coworking environment will be laid back, with a heavy focus on collaboration.

Though C3 Hillsborough will offer drip coffee for its members, Pacchiana noted that this space will not be a replacement for the local coffee shop, keeping the aim to sustain and build thriving businesses. If you want the “fancy coffee,” CupAJoe will still be the mainstay. This office space will be a new hub for people who have been working at home or in a very small office and are looking to work alongside and interact other with other people.

Even in the formation of the space, C3 Hillsborough has remained local. 

Joshua Collins of Digital Butler did the company branding, outside flower boxes were done by local Mary Susan Reed Daniel, and all IT work was done by Eric Garrison with WTE Solutions.

Their website, c3hillsborough.com, will offer collaborative tools for specialties within the coworking community. Members will be able to network through the website, which will extend into the larger community. 

The daily rate, which includes regular drip coffee, water, high-speed internet, and outlets is $20.

A social-level monthly membership includes amenities of the daily rate, with access to the floating desk space and conference room access with a fee, and will cost $150/ month. 

A membership level will offer the social monthly options, a filing cabinet, and access to the conference room, coworking space events and workshops, and 24/7 access to the building. This will cost $275/ month.

Dedicated office space, which would hold about 2-5 people per office, will be on a negotiable rate based on size and need. All of these options come with downtown parking space. 

At Last Fridays, the owners were made aware of the increasing need for a small private meeting rooms for local attorneys to meet with clients. As the space was created to change based on the communities needs, closed door offices like these will potentially be available on an hourly or daily rate basis in the future. 

C3 Hillsborough is taking applications online through email at info@c3hillsborough.com. They hope to keep rates affordable and to keep tenants primarily in Hillsborough, rather than those commuting from larger cities.