Coworking in Atlanta: Ignition Alley

I have a lot of random goals for 2012, some of which may make me rich beyond my most wildest of dreams (LOL… not.) and many of which are simply for general interest and personal development.

One of them is to visit experience all of the Atlanta-based Coworking spots and give them a try. I’ve already tried a handful of them but I have yet to commit to one in terms of a membership. I finally threw down some cash (not too much actually) for Ignition Alley, a coworking spot that’s literally a mile and a half from my home.

Started by three guys, one whom I went to school with and lived in a dorm across from mine our 2nd year, it’s a comfy spot just east of downtown on Ponce de Leon and across the street from the Ford Factory (where I lived my final year at school!). I can’t seem to escape this side of town, seriously!

And before I go any further I want to answer a question that many of you will probably want to ask me: Why are you spending money on an “office” space when you have another office and a functional home office setup? The answer to that is simple: I can’t work from home all the time or that would drive my wife and I insane and my startup office is a 45 minute drive one way so that’s not always fun. I need to change my environment consistently and this is a way to maximize my productivity during working hours.

Cool? Yeah. Very cool.

But the sheer convenience of it’s location put it on my radar very early on and I finally had the opportunity to drop on by this morning. Here’s a somewhat pictorial walkthrough of my first experience at the spot:

Parking is ample at this place and I was able to easily park on the side. What a beautiful view of the Atlanta skyline.

If there was ever a question of what you “could” expect with it being in this side of town then this picture should give you an idea:

Just kidding! This town is safe, but I literally LOL’d when I saw this.

Located at 750 Ponce de Leon Place it’s got a lot of restaurants (some hella-good pizza) and even a Whole Foods one block away.

Since it was my first time I needed to get my keycard for access so I punched the outside keypad for initial access:

Simple enough. Walking in it was pleasant and I headed to the back.

I walked in and was greeted by a pleasant (and quiet) atmosphere.

Ample desks and sitting spots as well as a sitting area with a couch and a few reclined chairs. A smaller room for team meetings perhaps and one large and one small whiteboard.

They even have a small locker room that you can rent for $10 a month to keep things overnight. I immediately grabbed a spot and hopped online as I surveyed my surroundings.

Ignition's speed.

Not too shabby. I felt right at home and it was easy to get comfortable.

I introduced myself to “Tim” who was there when it opened (at 7:00am every day) who is part of a 5-man startup team who use the space for their office.

Finally I jumped online to check out the internet speed. It wasn’t too bad although my home connection is a bit faster, especially on the download speed. There was only one more person in the spot so I was surprised that the download speed was so small considering they advertise a 50/10Mbps DOCSIS 3.0.

I got a need...

It is cable though so perhaps it was getting hammered by others this morning. Again, for comparison, here’s my home office speed:

Overall I’m going to try out Ignition Alley for a month or two and see how it fits. The sign-up process was simple and getting in was a breeze. Things look good so far.

In fact, the sheer convenience of it’s location might be the deciding factor for me in the long-run but we’ll have to see.

I’m excited to test it out as well as many of the others around the metro Atlanta area!

I'll see you next year... literally!

What are your thoughts on coworking? Do you have any great spots local to you?

Thanks Ignition Alley for a great first experience!

If you’re looking for other spots I’ve covered check these locations out!