Volta, the startup house in central Halifax, is moving to a temporary new location and doubling its size and capacity in the process.
The group’s administrators and tenants later this month will move to 20,000 square feet of space on the sixth and seventh floors of the Maritime Centre, the tower at the intersection of Barrington Street and Spring Garden Road.
The Volta team was recently notified that its current home is due to be torn down for redevelopment later this fall. The group has been hoping to move into the old central library at Spring Garden and Grafton, but that property won’t be ready until 2017. It plans to make its home in the Maritime Centre for about two years.
“With all the different community events that happen at Volta, we needed a place that enabled us to deliver more programs and support more startups,” Executive Director Melody Pardoe said in a statement Monday. “We were looking for a place that not only fit Volta’s needs but the startup community’s as well, and the Maritime centre was the best fit.”
The upside is that the enlarged space will allow Volta, which now has about 10 tenants, to double its intake to 20 and accommodate startups at various stages of growth.
Programs for growth-stage companies could be a boon to the Halifax startup grouping given the number of companies with bona fide traction and strong revenue growth. But scaling is difficult and many companies could benefit from mentorship as they bring on new employees and accommodate a larger number of clients.
The brainchild of GoInstant Co-Founder Jevon MacDonald, Volta opened its doors two years ago and quickly became the hub for the IT startup community in the city. Known for its wildly painted walls and Star Wars murals, Volta has hosted a range of community events and hackathons and is the Halifax base for the regional accelerator, PropelICT. As well as its current tenants, the group has more than 250 community members.
The Volta statement said the new space at the Maritime Centre will have conference rooms on both floors, allowing simultaneous events to be held. It will also have abundant meeting rooms and larger offices than the current location.