As some coworking spots spring up in the great outdoors, others are closing for good.
Three of WeWork’s more well-known DC coworking locations are closing at the end of the month, reports Bisnow. It will vacate two historic spaces—Shaw’s Wonder Bread Factory and Florida Avenue’s Manhattan Laundry—as well as its outpost at 718 Seventh Street in Chinatown. The group has 15 remaining locations in DC.
The closures are attributed to “streamlining our portfolio towards profitable growth,” wrote a WeWork spokesperson in an email when asked for comment. “With numerous excellent WeWork locations in the immediate area, we look forward to providing our members with first-class, flexible space solutions. In consolidating our market footprint, we’re excited to fortify our presence with the very best of our Washington, DC portfolio.”
WeWork will relocate existing members to other spots in the city, says the spokesperson.
PoPville ran a letter sent to WeWork members from DC area director Suzie Howell and DC portfolio director Evan Tyroler alerting them to closures. However, according to Twitter, some didn’t find out about the news until scrolling online.
“Unbelievable,” wrote Global Zero CEO Derek Johnson on Twitter while sharing the PoPville article. “We’ve been members at @WeWork‘s Manhattan Laundry location since it first opened in 2016, and *this* is how I find out the building is closing.”
Unbelievable. We've been members at @WeWork's Manhattan Laundry location since it first opened in 2016, and *this* is how I find out the building is closing at the end of October and we're all being evicted (oh, sorry, "relocated") with 2 weeks' notice. https://t.co/ufJM9rLt4c
— Derek Johnson (@derekjGZ) October 13, 2020
“Hey, @WeWork — why am I only learning about the closure of my WeWork location through a news story, not from you?,” tweeted PEN/Faulkner executive director Gwydion Suilebhan.
Hey, @WeWork — why am I only learning about the closure of my WeWork location through a news story, not from you?
— Gwydion Suilebhan Wears a Mask, and So Should You (@GwydionS) October 14, 2020
Others mourned the loss of the spaces. “Shout out, thank you, and goodbye to the birthplace of the @joebiden presidential primary campaign,” tweeted Biden campaign manager Greg Schultz of the Manhattan Laundry location. “We had some good, stressful, and team-bonding moments.”
— Greg Schultz (@schultzohio) October 13, 2020
The news about the DC closures comes after a bumpy 2019 for WeWork, when it called off its IPO, removed former CEO Adam Neumann, and fired 2,400 employees. In June, the group closed its first-ever location in New York.
Meanwhile, WeWork continued to charge its members throughout the pandemic, reports WUSA 9, and some DC members filed complaints against the group with DC Attorney General Karl Racine.