Free Space & Fostering Entrepreneurship

We have what I think is a fairly nice office space at 302 The East Mall, Suite 301, in Toronto. It has about 3,000 to 4,000 square feet (I'm not exactly sure how much so don't quote me on it), some funky furniture, a couple of meeting rooms, a bunch of large screen displays and a kitchen. Did I mention it also has windows pretty much all the way round?

Nice space but one problem. No one uses it. About a year ago we started going virtual and over time the space has become somewhere we go to have our reviews and gatherings every week or two, and that is about it. Part of the problem is that there just isn't enough buzz in the office anymore to have the attraction of drawing you there for a little socialization and idea sharing. So most of the time the space sits pretty much empty.

And to make matters worse, awhile back I thought it was a brilliant idea to renew our lease early to make sure that we didn't lose the space. Back then showing up everyday and putting in face time was important, or so I thought, and you needed an office to do that in. So... I renewed the lease for 5 years which ends in February 2013. Yes, I kick myself about it enough, no need to talk further about it. Now we have tried to sublet but in this market nothing is moving.

Which brings me to my point. I'm thinking about making the office available to a limited group of entrepreneurs. FREE. As a drop in, setup shop, whatever. I have spent pretty much my entire life as an entrepreneur. I enjoy more than anything talking and listening to entrepreneurs. And where I can, helping entrepreneurs. Inevitably I learn something from every encounter. So it dawned on me. This could be a way that I can help someone get started. Create more buzz in the office. Share more ideas, etc. So I am wondering if there is anyone out there who is starting up and needs an address, a place to meet clients and is looking to share resources? I have never done anything like this before so I am a bit unsure as whether this would work or if anyone would even be interested in using the space. The goal would be to bring a few techy type start-ups together under one roof, a place where they could, when they feel like it, bounce ideas off of each other, heck, you could even be a start-up competitor, I wouldn't care.

So here's the question. Is there anyone out there that would like to take advantage of FREE office space for the next year or so? I'm not saying this is a done deal, I am just asking if anyone is interested and if there is enough interest I'll start the ball rolling and we can see where it lands. And, if you're reading this if you could pass this along to your circle of friends, etc. that would help get the message out.