RALEIGHHQ Raleigh isn’t done expanding just yet.

The city’s largest co-working space with some 280 companies utilizing its spaces and services has announced plans to become the anchor tenant for the soon-to-be renovated Gateway Plaza, located just north of downtown at 2409 Crabtree Boulevard.

To be called HQ@Gateway, the 21,000-square-foot space will include a 150-person event space and a 50-person classroom.

“We are really excited that HQ is growing this year,” Jessica Porta, HQ Raleigh’s director, told WRAL TechWire.

HQ’ Raleigh’s Jessica Porta.

The news comes on the heels of HQ Raleigh’s decision to launch another new location at North Carolina State University’s Centennial Campus. The firm is currently occupying the former incubator space, but is repurposing a 20,000-square-foot industrial space in the Partners I building, which will be the new home to NC State’s popular Entrepreneurship Garage program.

“In total, we are growing by 57,000 square feet, making our total footprint in Raleigh over 100,000 square feet by the end of this year,” Porta said.

She added the decision to expand was “need driven”.

“All of our spaces are completely full with new and growing companies. We want to be able to accommodate the growth of our existing teams and welcome in new teams.

“The decision to expand into the Gateway location was very intentional. The space will be right next to the growing Lion’s Park neighborhood and will allow us to more intentionally engage communities that we were not reaching before.”

The firm has two other locations: its main headquarters on South Harrington Street in the Warehouse District and another on West Martin Street – with a total of about 700 members from 280 different companies.

However, there is some uncertainty surrounding its Warehouse District headquarters. The property’s owners are seeking permission to build up to 20 stories there.

“Should the development of the Warehouse space require us to relocate, we would most likely continue to grow and expand rather than combine multiple locations because they each carry such a unique value for our community,” Porta said.

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Co-working market booming

The market for co-working spaces seems to be booming.

New York-based WeWork launched a space in Durham last October, and has two additional projects in the works – one in Raleigh and a second location in Durham. The Triangle is home to several other co-working spaces. And American Underground in Durham offers co-working as part of its suite of service offerings.

Porta welcomed the competition, and said it validates the benefits of the co-working model.

“We see enough need in the market that we believe that HQ will continue to be grow and be successful alongside other competitors,” she said.

She also noted that HQ Raleigh has a “different concept” to WeWork.

“HQ Raleigh was born out of Innovate Raleigh, to provide a collecting and convening space for the entrepreneurial community,” she said.

“We are deeply rooted in the local community and focused on the growth and development of Raleigh.”

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