Cheap rent for creative types

18:35, Aug 03 2014

Creative types are being offered cheap rent to help get their ideas off the ground.

A converted warehouse at 376 Wilsons Rd, Waltham, informally opened on Friday and tenants are expected to start opening their popup ventures within the month.

"The whole project is about experimentation... for people getting started," said Camia Young, chairwoman of Exchange Christchurch (XCHC.)

Central city warehouse space cost about $250-$450 a square metre, an "impossible" price for creative industries, Young said.

A 40 square metre studio at XCHC will cost $1800 a month, or $45 a square metre.

Part of the front of the building will be fitted out as a cafe, where food entrepreneurs can trial their business.


Also at the front will be commercial space for retail popups.

Among the early tenants will be Fabricko Fab Lab, which started with a 3-D printer in a 7-metre container beside the Pallet Pavilion.

The fabrication laboratory will bring equipment to XCHC to concentrate on "innovation for the built environment", administrator Carl Pavletich said.

Beehives and park benches were the sorts of structures that could be manufactured at XCHC.

Sculpture and installation artist Courtney Spargo lacked space at home to create a suspension artwork.

The work will be installed beside the Avon River, near the Antigua Boat Sheds, in November.

"The space will always be changing," exchange operator Harry Knight said.

Festival of Transitional Architecture (Festa) will occupy some XCHC space briefly.

There are four studio and workshops as well as showcase space for lectures, performances and installations. Click here for more info.

The Press