Staunton Innovation Hub coworking space celebrates at ribbon cutting

Published: Nov. 18, 2021 at 11:59 PM EST
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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) - On Thursday afternoon, the Staunton Innovation Hub (SIH) celebrated its progress and the opening of Phase 2 of the hub with its creators, supporters, investors, and members at a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Despite the challenges of the pandemic, the 30,000 square-foot coworking space opened and was fully operational by Oct. 2020. SIH is working with Valley businesses and entrepreneurs with the mission of reducing barriers to innovation and promote collaboration and community.

“It’s just so cool to see people collaborating and to just know the next big, great idea is probably going to come out of this building, so keep an eye on it,” Courtney Thompson, the CEO of the Greater Augusta Regional Chamber of Commerce, said Thursday night.

Co-founders Peter Denbigh and Alison Denbigh have been working on this project since 2015. Now, they have created a space in the heart of downtown Staunton where more than 80 businesses and entrepreneurs utilize the hub as their workspaces.

The SIH has nearly 40 private offices, several private conference rooms, space for events, open desks and workspaces, a coffee bar, and a rooftop community space that overlooks the Queen City. This all with the hope of growing Staunton and the greater Shenandoah Valley.

“To provide that opportunity to our members is unreal and just knowing that the next person who comes in might have that idea that changes the world and it originates here from the Shenandoah Valley,” Peter Denbigh said. “We’re just very proud to be a part of that community.”

Alison Denbigh shared the story of how the SIH vision came to fruition, all while preserving a historic building. She explained the journey to the finish line included many obstacles like flooding, sewage lines, and dealing with shortages of supplies.

“You’ll notice that we tried to make [the SIH] modern with pops of color, artwork, and lights, but we really had to marry historical with industrial and modern,” Alison Denbigh. “All of our partners really strived to make that happen.”

The SIH is still not complete. The next phase of this project includes creating a plaza and green space next to the building on N. Central Ave.

“It’s this beautiful green space with opportunities for hosting events, an outdoor stage, food truck hookups, and just a nice community center for downtown Staunton,” Peter Denbigh said.

He said they hope to have that phase completed by 2022.

“We have a lot of capacity left for coworkers and there are always folks coming in and leaving based on what their lives need at the moment, so there’s always an opportunity to become part of this ecosystem. Even if you’re not part of this, our resources are available to the community,” Peter Denbigh said. “If you need a conference room or a video/audio room, you can rent that space as well.”

For more information on the Staunton Innovation Hub, click here.

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