KOLKATA: With an eye on digital nomads, young entrepreneurs and entry-level techies, the state government has come up with a one-of-a-kind coliving and coworking space in New Town to provide affordable living and working space to employees from outside the city. The hub, christened Smart Connect, will also have amenities like a gym, library, cafeteria and games parlour.
The government is in talks with several IT firms and startups to take up workspace in Smart Connect and employees who work here will get preference for the accommodation facilities.
Coworking is no longer a new concept in Kolkata but coliving is still quite a contemporary idea. While coworking sees people share work areas, meeting rooms and resources at a discounted rate, which is far less than the cost of renting an office space, coliving applies the same principles to accommodation.
Built by West Bengal Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation (Hidco), ‘Smart Connect’ has 86 dwelling units alongside a three-floor workspace close to City Centre II. The construction is in its final stage and the premises will be ready to host companies and guests before the Pujas, officials said.
Each 186-sqft private room will come with a single bed, an attached bath, an open kitchen, a study table, cabinets, a balcony, free Wifi, an AC, a refrigerator and a microwave and will have laundry and cleaning services. The rent, say Hidco officials, will be much less than that charged by PGs or the cost of one-room rented accommodations in Kolkata, New Town or Salt Lake.
“To top it all, there will be the coworking space spread over three floors with high-speed internet, where individuals can set up their own office at very affordable rates. There will be open and closed offices along with multiple conference rooms on each floor to be allotted on an hourly basis along with paid amenities like printers and pantry services,” said a Hidco official.
There will also be a dedicated parking lot to accommodate 100-odd cars and bikes.