What is going on is that we are seeing the emergence of the new face to face workplace that fits the life of the freelancer - who is at the core of the real new economy. (All images from the 2nd global survey of co working - PDF here)
You can have a job now, be a student, be on the verge of retirement, be just layed off - here is where you can find the network you need and learn how to be a human again.
I think that the Co Working Space is the "Factory" of our time. This is the social space that the Freelancer needs to combat the separation and loneliness of the solo role. This is the social space that opens us each up to the broader network. It is also the space where we learn to be a proper human again - where how we behave matters.
View Coworking Spaces in a larger map
Here is a map that will show you the closest one to you.
What they offer is a real Tribe. While the income has improved - look at all the other parts of life that are better!
The Queen St Commons was started in 2005 - we were one of the first 5 in the world in a city of less than 35,000. We were an oddity but now are more of the new norm as rural co work grows. As more of us leave the city, the Rural Co Working spot becomes more important. Rural sites also have to have an economic model that fits - much more a co-op than a top down space rental.
Lots to learn from each other as new micro models emerge. So lots of good reasons for Co Working spaces to get connected now to each other.
The next big move I think will be connecting all the co working sites into a global network. So a member of a site in a rural village can get to London or New York or Mumbai! And then think of the power of the connections?
My new book You Don't Need a Job - explores more of the value of co working for anyone who wants to put a toe into the real new economy.