It’s worth a walk downtown, especially along Stephen Avenue, to get a feeling this city is still thriving. Visitors and those working in the core enjoy the benefits of the varied shops, restaurants and lively patios.
The many benefits to be found in the core are also persuading more companies to locate their offices where the action is. A good example is the recent move of ReSourceYYC, whose co-founders, Ron Bettin and Bill Scott, relocated the co-working space from its former Beltline home a few blocks over the railway tracks.
The business has now settled into its new home on the entire 20th floor of the One Palliser Square tower.
Having outgrown a previous space in the Demcor Building, Bettin was impressed with the help he received from Rob Blackwell of Aspen Properties. Bettin considered the under-renovation tower at 9th Avenue and Centre Street, where he once worked at Encana, but found the space to the east of the Calgary Tower more suited to his needs.
The new space has 35 offices around the outside and 12 interior offices, plus meeting rooms and kitchen.
Today, the hub is about one-third full; the ReSourceYYC members are highly skilled professionals with a spirit of entrepreneurship who enjoy the benefits of working in a collaborative space with access to software from six vendors. The cost is much less than they would pay to work in their own downtown office.
ReSourceYYC offers wireless throughout, high-speed internet, in-house IT support and technical Lunch ‘n’ Learns, as well as a popular networking event Thursday afternoons, Beers with Peers. The building also gives members access to a fitness centre, conference centre and a number of meeting and boardrooms.
Membership is offered in a range of packages from dedicated offices, dedicated desk space in a semi-private office or daily drop-in rooms; a downtown office to meet clients or use the services of other members.
Jordan Sloan of Layton Consulting is able to look out from his office window at the glazing his company engineered for the new Telus Sky tower.
Bettin himself is a member through one of his own companies, Fitneff, an e-commerce company promoting healthy workplace behaviour with a variety of adjustable desks and other office accessories. A desk he designed that fits across any treadmill is selling across Canada and the U.S., and his staff are working on an order for 60 Walktop treadmill desks for the Dell Foundation.
Bettin says it’s interesting to note the reaction of
his members and potential clients who consider the move to be from “inaccessible” to “close to everything” — a 300-metre change that appears to be an important customer consideration.
News and notes
Many downtown business people — and his old hockey team — were surprised when Michael Halliwell, senior vice-president and regional manager of Canadian Western Bank, accepted a transfer to Edmonton a few short years back. He enjoyed 20 years at the bank’s main branch here and during that time earned the respect of many. Now I hear Halliwell has decided to retire from banking in September. Maybe he can be persuaded to return to Calgary.
David Parker appears regularly in the Herald. Read his columns online at calgaryherald.com/business. He can be reached at 403-830-4622 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.