Startup Hub Expands, Completing Citywide “Evolutionary Ecosystem” in Former Cigarette Capital

The American Underground — the central station for ascending entrepreneurs– today announced an expansion custom designed for early stage startups, adding to the density that has already made Durham a national destination for entrepreneurs.

Located at 201 West Main Street (the Self Help Building) in a bustling downtown, the new space is an extension of the award-winning American Tobacco Historic District, home to the original Underground hub as well as many sizable mature companies.  The space sits just about center to ATC, West Village, Golden Belt and the Gear Street action (Fullsteam Brewery & Motorco).

Underground @Main Street, as the expansion hub will be called, weighs in at 22,000 square feet with room for about 50 startups (see list below of already-committed companies). The space covers two floors and will employ lessons from around the tech world to foster the collaboration, learning, and connections young companies need to thrive.  Adam Klein, Chief Strategist visited other startup hubs including Boston as well as researched heavily what makes for a great startup space.

The 201 West Main Street building, which is owned by Self-Help Credit Union, has a history of hosting entrepreneurial initiatives including the Bull City Startup Stampede and now houses prominent technology company Blogads.

@Main Street also augments an “entrepreneurial ecosystem” that may be utterly unique. Downtown Durham  — flush with nearly 100 startups overall — now has customized space and a clear trajectory for:

  1. early stage startups (the Underground @Main Street)
  2. newcomers poised for growth (at the original American Underground, now known as the Underground @American Tobacco Campus)
  3. mature tech companies (the award-winning American Tobacco Historic District, home to successes such as Bronto and Appia).

Media and members of the startup community are invited to an unveiling party on Friday, November 16, 4:30 p.m. at American Tobacco’s Bay 7 as part of Triangle Entrepreneur Week. Click here to register. Related video here.

Interested companies should visit www.americanunderground.com to apply for space @Main Street.

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