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The top 10 shared office space options in Toronto

Posted by Sarah Ratchford / April 12, 2013

Shared office space torontoShared office space options in Toronto have proliferated since our last post on the topic. And it's a good thing too. Working from home in one's pajamas can play a major role in spurring the onset of insanity. Like cats, we need a bit of human interaction in order to keep our heads screwed on properly. When you spend too much time alone, you start talking to yourself, and before you know it, you're the nuttiest person on the bus and you don't even notice.

Because of this widely-known factoid, office spaces dedicated to an atmosphere of co-working have been cropping up all over the city. Finally, an excuse to get out of bed, scrape the drool off your face, dust off the chip crumbs and go make some work-friends.

Now it's even easier to escape the confines of your home/local coffee shop and work from an office haven complete with exposed brick and long communal tables. Yes, you still have to work, but at least this way you won't spend most of the day meandering to and from the fridge and wondering if anything good to eat will ever magically appear. Most of the spaces offer a combination of private offices, dedicated desks and hot desks, which are shared by multiple people at different times.

Not only does this space-sharing model inspire the self-employed to put on a pair of jeans and actually leave the house: It also (in theory, at least) fosters some serious development and intermingling of ideas. Innovation, if you will. Here, a collection of lovely newfangled office spaces in Toronto:

IQ Office Suites
Since it's home to the blogTO office we'd get some funny looks in the hallways is we didn't exert our bias and put this at the top of our list. But it deserves it. IQ Office occupies three floors of the historic Dineen building at Yonge and Temperance. The space provides private offices as well as dedicated desks, and there's group meeting space that fosters open discussion on the lower level. There are coffee and tea stations set up at various points throughout the space. IQ offers virtual office services as well. Prices for office and desk space range from $599 to $4,900 per month, depending on the size of the unit in question.

Centre for Social Innovation
CSI is known for hosting the beginnings of grassroots operations, countless interesting talks and community-oriented lunches. There are three locations: Spadina, the Annex, and Regent Park. The spaces are all large and light-filled, with warm brick and wood finishes, and they collectively house about 400 organizations. There are a range of rates available, depending on your needs. Rates start at $30 for access to the community, and they climb to $900 per month for a private office. There are lots of options in between, and all members are entitled to 24/7 access to the buildings' facilities. (Psst: they also offer a free introductory day so you can see if you actually like working in close proximity to other humans. Win.)

Workplace OneWorkplace One
Workplace One has a business focus, with the intent of encouraging entrepreneurs to help one another and share ideas. There are two locations, one at Queen and Bathurst, and one at King and Parliament. The buildings are equipped with WiFi and reception to greet clients. Each floor has fax services, a scanner and printer, a kitchen, and coffee stations. There's also a lounge and professional boardrooms for meetings and strategy development. Workplace One is a little pricier than some other co-working locations, with dedicated desks running about $565 per month. There are also $25 day passes for co-working in the lounge, though.

MaRs Commons
Where many of these spaces seem aimed at more overtly creative types, MaRs has an entrepreneurial bent. The space is tailored to those starting up new businesses, with advisory services and business courses, and workshops with experienced entrepreneurs. Workspace is difficult to get though. There's a big wait-list and it's invite-only (but anyone is welcome to apply).

Project:Rhino
Project:Rhino is snuggled into the heart of King West, at Bathurst St. Rates vary, but a slice of desk space can be had here for $250 per month. Or, if you don't want to actually show up to the office, they also offer virtual office services. Which basically means that you can make yourself seem like a legit human by having your shit mailed to the Rhino. Cool! Members also have access to a games room with Steam Whistle on tap, a gallery, and group meeting areas. Project:Rhino seems like a fun place to work, geared toward freelancers and startups. They make the time to play with new initiatives, like the monthly drinks and demos series. Those who join the community are also provided with 24-7 access, high speed internet, and colour laser printing.

Co-Work on Bloor
Located across from Christie Pits park, Co-Work on Bloor has the seemingly requisite exposed beams, brick and concrete. Costs are flexible, with a full-time monthly membership available for $325. Co-Work offers private, semi-private and open work spaces. Amenities include wireless connectivity and printing, coffee, and lots of shared meeting space. It's also possible to get an ADCC discount on your workspace.

ING Network Orange TorontoING Network Orange
Rates vary, but the drop-in rate is only $20 for the day, and 40 hours of desk space per month for $100. Apparently 100 per cent of that goes to charity, too. Perks of the space include wireless, projectors, teleconference, videoconference, and WebEx equipment, as well as whiteboards, colour printing, copying, scanning, faxing, networking events and educational seminars. There are both hot desks and group meeting rooms available.

Beach Business Hub
The Beach Business Hub, located just east of Queen and Woodbine, is somewhat less fancy than some of the other co-working locations in the city. It looks more like a traditional office, but then, I guess that's the point of these spaces, not aimlessly staring at the decor. (Or is it?) The space provides "the usual office equipment and access to shared meeting rooms. They don't yet have private offices on offer, but according to their website, that could change. Amenities include administrative services, I.T. support, and LCD projection rentals. Rates are comparable to other locations, with drop-ins available for $25 and private desks for $425 per month.

Camaraderie
Camaraderie is the Roncy neighbourhood's answer to the co-working scene. Located at Dundas and Roncesvalles, this space offers the classic office fixings, including a printer, scanner, shredder, internet access, boardroom access and coffee stations. "startup rooms can be had for $600 per month, with drop in rates at $25 per day. Most of the available space is in the form of shared work space and desks, but there are two private offices. Regular hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., but 24 hour access is available as well.

Foundery
Foundery is a recently renovated, 2,000 square foot space at Dundas and Bathurst. It features high-speed wireless internet, printing and fax capabilities, a full kitchen and access to a private conference room. The office is home to a mixture of artists, entrepreneurs and freelancers. Rates range from $25 for one day to $2390 per month for the swankiest private office option.

BONUS SPACE!

S.O.W. Space
Because we couldn't leave out Scarborough, S.O.W. Space, or Study or Work Space, located at Ellesmere and McCowan, just might be the most student-friendly option of the bunch. Like other spaces, the rates vary, but on the whole they seem slightly lower than average. There's the standard $25 drop-in fee, and casual membership is $130, which buys you 60 hours of office space per month. Members get access to office amenities like white boards, fax, office phone, internet, coffee stations and free parking.

Or, you know. There's always eating cake in bed in your Power Ranger jammies.

What did we miss? Do you know of a great shared office space or co-working option in Toronto?

Discussion

46 Comments

MS / April 12, 2013 at 12:34 pm
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This article cries out for a Google map of the locations.
Gary / April 12, 2013 at 12:40 pm
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Co-Lab on Britain St, near Sherbourne and Queen is another new option, I checked out the space and it looked very cool. https://www.facebook.com/ColabToronto
Vasant Kumar / April 12, 2013 at 12:59 pm
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I've been to the Project Rhino space a few times and am always amazed with the energy.

Even if you work elsewhere, be sure to check out their Drinks and Demos events to listen to some stories and connect with smart people.
Mitchell Lesbirel / April 12, 2013 at 01:19 pm
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Started working at the Rhino about a month ago. It's been a blast so far! The people here are awesome and our productivity has skyrocketed since getting out of the coffee shop.

Would definitely recommend checking it out.
Ahmad Iqbal / April 12, 2013 at 01:25 pm
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This post is missing the YMC space on Front & Jarvis!
http://www.theymc.com/

Not only is this a co-working area, but all inhabitants also get access to all the workshops and education series that are hosted out of the space.
I have to say it's the best in the city and most fun to work out of. There is PingPong - Game room, with pretty much every video game console ever made, a great library of books anyone can checkout, and access to 5 meeting/break-out rooms. ALSO BASKETBALL ON THE PATIO!
James King / April 12, 2013 at 01:40 pm
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The article missed out on Bento Miso! It's kind of a big hub for a lot of small tech and indie-games entrepreneurs in Toronto.
asas / April 12, 2013 at 02:42 pm
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both CSI are great places and have wonderful/interesting ideas coming outta of them
Martina / April 12, 2013 at 03:42 pm
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Great to see this article AND have my Beach Business Hub amongst them! Had to laugh at the first line that it's "somewhat less fancy". LOL. Well, I couldn't get a loft or former industrial building but we all like it. Guess I need to post newer photos - we have art on some of the walls now. Also, article's link to Rates doesn't work - Please use: http://beachbusinesshub.ca/services-fees/. Thanks for writing and reading about coworking.
AEL / April 12, 2013 at 04:04 pm
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Yeah, Bento Miso is basically the best thing since ice cream sandwiches. Can't believe you missed it.
Bunnyhutch / April 12, 2013 at 04:11 pm
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Bento Miso. Totally. The space AND the people are lovely.
Cale / April 12, 2013 at 04:36 pm
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Bento Miso is pretty much the best place ever. Besides the fact that the people who work out of there put out awesome creative vibes, the owners have been more than incredible having given myself(and many others) some very wise advice about how to do this whole 'business' thing. Bento has also become the hub for events regarding Toronto's amazing indie game scene as well as hosting many other types of events on top of that. You had best not miss them the next time you write up about Toronto co-working!
Bry / April 12, 2013 at 08:43 pm
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Can't believe how expensive CSI is. Just nuts.
Craig / April 13, 2013 at 01:13 pm
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You can rent a co-working desk at the Uniiverse HQ https://www.uniiverse.com/l/3WVNZ – or you can post your own co-working space on this Toronto-based marketplace: https://www.uniiverse.com/office
wikito / April 13, 2013 at 02:57 pm
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despite the csi cost, i do like the green wall at csi
wikito / April 13, 2013 at 02:57 pm
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http://www.wikito.org/File:Csi2.jpg
green wall
_n / April 15, 2013 at 11:43 am
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How did you miss Bento Miso? It's pretty much the best thing since kittens!
Andrew / April 15, 2013 at 01:51 pm
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Camaraderie is so wonderful.
Andy / April 17, 2013 at 04:22 pm
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Colab is my fav http://co-lab.co Did anyone else know about britain street and old town Toronto. What an awesome little strip of Toronto. Tons of cool design firms there.
ruyoung / May 29, 2013 at 10:11 am
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Thanks for including Camaraderie - we love our space in the west end!

For coworking spaces across the city, you can see the list at http://www.coworkingtoronto.ca/find-a-space/
Roger / June 19, 2013 at 09:50 pm
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There's another "quaint" studio just opening to new members a stone's throw from Union and St. Lawrence Market area 85 King East has room for 6 full time members. Due to our location, we're open to any self-run business looking to build their business within a wider community.

Come check us out - we have an open house on June 25th - 6:30 - 8pm - Please rsvp @ http://tinyurl.com/pvd8doe (50 spots only)
Amir / June 24, 2013 at 03:31 pm
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For co-working there is also space at Gizmolabs. It's a community driven space for start-up companies and people to connect and grow.
Mike / July 2, 2013 at 11:26 am
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I started off with shared office space in Telsec Business Centres @ 1 Yong and have since moved into a private office at the same location without having to change my business address. Yet friends have rented shared office space at other locations and when they needed more space they had to move and change all their business cards and all of their online citations.
Michael / September 25, 2013 at 12:38 pm
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I see Amir has already mentioned gizmolabs, but I'd like to add on to that by saying it's a really great place to work at.
Mina / October 2, 2013 at 04:02 pm
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I checked all these options and I still believe the one I am working with is the best ( http://www.officeexec.com/v5/blog/ ) as these guys are giving me 12 hrs of meeting space in 3 ocations ( downtown, yorkvill and North York) which I could never get with my limited budget. The center looks unbelievably professional!
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Info / November 18, 2013 at 12:37 pm
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Brendan / November 21, 2013 at 09:00 am
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I've been with the Rostiegroup for a few years now and the people, the space and the overall feel of the place is absolutely amazing. Truly a shame to not see them on the list here, the author must have overlooked what is hands down Toronto's besr option for shared space. 20 bay street, 11th floor. Check it out, you won't be disappointed.
Thiva / December 13, 2013 at 01:56 pm
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Some of these links don't work - either the spaces were never reliable to begin with, our your links are wrong:
http://www.sowspace.com/index.html
http://workplaceone.com/aboutus.html
http://marscommons.marsdd.com/what-we-offer/space/

And it would help if you published your ratings standards and why some of the office spaces that are mentioned in the comments didn't make it. Is it because your research was hurried and incomplete or because they truly didn't cut it according to the standards of your ratings. Since office space is something more objectively qualify-able than restaurant food, some transparency is warranted.
Mitch / December 19, 2013 at 05:50 pm
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MakeWorks Co-Working Studio on College street has truly blossomed since we first joined their office space. What started off as a humble, well-fit studio for our company to grow, has truly developed into a second home for us and many other companies that chose to subside here. Within the first month of arriving, a few other companies joined us and we couldn't be happier with the collaboration and compatibility among everyone. There is plenty of space to operate 60 + people, let alone how respectful and willing to accommodate to everyone's needs are. The facility has an event space, 50 + desks, lecture room, private conference rooms and more; therefore even when the building is running at capacity, there is plenty of space to operate comfortably without any operational interruptions or complications. MakeWorks Co-Working studio came through at the opportune time for us to find a facility and expand let alone their accommodation of additional needs. Come in and talk to someone and get a free tour of the facility, everyone at this facility (especially the MakeWorks Managers) are some of the nicest people I've come across in this city. Make going to work comfortable, lets MakeWorks!
Mitch replying to a comment from Mitch / December 19, 2013 at 05:52 pm
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http://collegestreetcoworki.wix.com/makeworks
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I think it's always helpful to read through content from other writers and use something from their websites. Thanks.
Shane.Z / January 28, 2014 at 04:43 pm
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I'm unsure how you missed Bento Miso. It's a great public work space and has some of the most amazing people there in general in addition to hosting many events for their community.
Local Business / February 21, 2014 at 10:49 pm
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Thanks in favor of sharing such a nice idea, piece of writing is pleasant, thats why i have read it fully
Ryan Breen / March 16, 2014 at 07:36 am
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A new one of these just popped up down on east Gerrard ST. They have a website up at http://socialgardener.org
Chris Luckhardt / March 20, 2014 at 10:44 am
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Some of the CSI information is out of date. They've actually got close to 700 member organizations now, which also includes a new location in New York City.
Allan bernstein / May 6, 2014 at 06:02 pm
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Here's one from left field . How about shared retail space in GTA , Oakville etc? Pop up retail has a bright future but it has to move around therefore short term stays
Share / June 5, 2014 at 10:13 am
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ACME WORKS isn't on this list! It's probably the best space in Toronto, as far as co-working spaces go. It's got lots of flexible types of office arrangements, from private, semi-private, to hot desks. Internet is included in the price! And, the owner of the space is such a nice human being. She's so understanding, and helps you out in every single way that she possibly can. Acme Works is such a clean, organized, and trendy looking space. Plus it's huuuugeee and super accommodating. Boardrooms, Coffees/ teas/ hot chocolate...you name it! Acme Works FTW.
Edward / July 9, 2014 at 10:26 pm
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How is Regus not on this list? They have like 15 locations in Toronto. I've been working out of their 151 Yonge Street location for a year and it's fantastic and vibrant! I visited most of the places on this list when searching and Regus was by far the best for so many reasons!
Alex replying to a comment from Allan bernstein / August 14, 2014 at 03:36 pm
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Hi Allan, visit the Burlington HiVE for coworking in the Burlington/Oakville area. I am the community director here.
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Michael Sibley / September 16, 2014 at 05:37 am
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We are in the process of writing a profile for Toronto on our office space website at http://www.newofficeamerica.com/serviced-offices/toronto (at the top of the sidebar). It was useful reading this article and especially the comments as it helped us get an idea of which areas of the city people are talking about and which centres are of particular interest. We list over 40 offices to rent in Toronto including some of the ones on this list - we've recently added IQ Office Suites: http://www.newofficeamerica.com/details/offices-at-iq-office-suites-140-yonge-street-toronto. If anyone has any feedback on what additional information would be useful to include on our profile it would be gratefully received.
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