Who remembers Cosmo Lee (not to be confused with the founder of Invisible Oranges with the same name)'s old bar Blah Blah Lounge on 11th Street and 7th Ave in Park Slope? It was a cool little place before it closed to make room for Applewood. Applewood then seemed to be a popular restaurant, but all good things come to an end, and the beloved establishment closed suddenly after 11 years in 2016, as DNAinfo reported at the time.

Cosmo meanwhile is still the landlord and still lives upstairs and has just become a small business owner again with the space re-opening as a co-working space called Park Slope Desk.

Cosmo Lee, the owner and founder of Park Slope Desk, was working as an independent contractor and found it hard to get work done in coffee shops and cafes.

"It's just not ideal. There's distractions, it's noisy, you're bumping into people," he told Patch. "There's this romantic idea of being able to not work at the office and being places like coffee shops, but it just turns out it's not a very productive place. You end up wasting a lot of time."

So he decided to open a place where people like him could come get work done with their own desk space, reliable internet and plenty of power outlets.

"I needed a place that I could get work done, a productive place, and I could see there were lots of other people in the cafes trying to do work," Lee said. [PATCH]

Desks will cost you anywhere from $100 to $350 a month depending on your needs, but it wasn't the existence of this new business alone that caused us to randomly write about a co-working space, and it wasn't just that it exists in the old Blah Blah space. We're writing about this today because of this cool deal that Cosmo just announced via this press release:


Local journalism is a tough business these days. With advertising down, and competition for advertising dollars from Google and Facebook, local news websites and paper publications have a hard time making it. Not surprisingly, journalists working for these publications earn a fraction of what they were once paid for their hard work. It's a struggle to exist for those working to provide the vital service of keeping residents informed of what’s happening in their community.

When the staff at two of the largest local news websites, DNAinfo and Gothamist, voted recently to join a union, the website’s billionaire owner shut the sites down, citing the inability to make a profit, laying­off scores of employees. To support the critical mission of our local journalists, Cosmo Lee, owner of Park Slope Desk, the neighborhood’s new co­working space, is offering former employees of DNA Info, Gothamist, as well as journalists working for Brooklyn’s various local publications, a special $1 co­working subscription through the winter.

Lee became concerned about the survival of local journalism when he heard of the sudden closure of DNA Info and Gothamist. “Large publications mostly miss what is going on at the local level,” says Lee.

“Media such as the Daily News and the New York Times have slashed street­level reporting, and important stories that do wind up being carried by large publications are often first uncovered by local journalists. They play such an essential role, covering community events and holding our local authorities accountable.”

Co­working, too, is a very local business. "Our members come directly from the community", says Lee, “and like our members, journalists need a place to focus. Their apartments are full of distractions, and cafes on their beat are too noisy for them to work effectively. Park Slope Desk can provide them with a comfortable and productive place to get their work done while they're out and about covering their stories. The conference room is available for private interviews. Whether they’re covering holiday festivities, breaking news about local crime or construction, it would make me happy to help journalists get the story out."

Park Slope Desk is a new co­working community in central Park Slope offering desk rentals for people needing more productive work space than in their apartments and cafes. Its mission is to provide a place where people can escape distractions, focus, and, as their motto states, "Get It Done." The facility offers fast internet service, ergonomic chairs, printing, scanning and laminating capabilities, and a kitchen/common room with unlimited complimentary coffee and tea. Monthly membership plans vary according to desk size and time of day. Rates start at $100/mo. for evening desks. Opening hours are from 8 am ­ midnight, with later hours upon demand.

Former employees of DNAinfo and Gothamist, as well as journalists who work for local area publications, qualify for the $1 winter co­working offer. Further information can be found at www.parkslopedesk.com and inquiries may be addressed to info@parkslopedesk.com. Park Slope Desk is located at 501 11th St, Brooklyn NY, 11215.

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