We just got passed word of this last night, so here's the raw details and know that we'll be following up with more later as we learn and the space launches on June 1. (Update: Some additional detail added, coworking stance clarified.)
A group dubbed Spark Charleston has announced its intent to start a free collaborative workspace at 480 East Bay Street near the S.C. Aquarium.
The idea behind the project is to accelerate the growth of "high-potential start-ups in the Charleston region" by providing space, basic amenities, and strategic support for 12-16 people from "all industries."
The idea is similar to the North Charleston coworking that started back in January (disclosure: I helped get that project going) by helping get entrepreneurs out of their houses and together in an environment where business plans can gel and accelerate.
“Many entrepreneurs are isolated in garages and coffee shops throughout Charleston. By uniting them under one roof, we hope they can inspire and learn from each other, create a local community of entrepreneurs, and ultimately build successful companies,” states Chris Clark, the project’s coordinator.
But that's where the idea splinters from standard coworking and becomes more akin to business incubation. Groups will need to say why they deserve the free 6-month leases and how they expect to soon make revenue. At the end of that term the businesses will be debuted for potential investment.
While different in many ways, the idea has many similarities to the nearby Flagship, a project of Charleston's Digital Corridor.
If you're interested, check out the group's Web site and look for an open on Monday, May 3, from 4-7 p.m. and the start of official operations on June 1, 2010.