Hashtag Fresno, a shared enclave and 24-7 collaborative workspace for technology freelancers and innovators, has announced that it will close up shop at its location in Fresno’s Tower District in October and reopen in Bitwise Industries’ new South Stadium building now undergoing renovation in downtown Fresno.
Irma Olguin Jr. launched the Hashtag about four years ago in an 1,800-square-foot space on Wishon Avenue. The goal was to “create the coolest workspace in Fresno for people who need to get (stuff) done,” Olguin said in a message to members. “Nothing of its kind existed in the Valley and 24-hour availability was just unheard of, but we built it and you came.” Since that time, the collaborative with its shared office space and conference facilities attracted more than 400 work-at-home types and independent entrepreneurs.
As much as we love the Tower and all you stone-cold weirdos in it, it’s time to throw our weight behind the revitalization of downtown Fresno.
Irma Olguin Jr., Hashtag Fresno founder
In 2013, Olguin became the chief technology officer of Bitwise Industries, a burgeoning hub of home-grown and relocating small technology businesses; the Hashtag became a division of Bitwise but remained ensconced in its Tower District digs. Now Bitwise is expanding to a second location, renovating the 52,000-square-foot, 101-year-old Phelan Garage building at Van Ness Avenue and Mono Street, not far from the Chukchansi Park baseball stadium. Hashtag will close its Tower District location Oct. 24 and move into the Bitwise South Stadium building, with a space about twice the size of its current location.
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The Hashtag plans to reopen Nov. 1 to coincide with the grand opening of the Bitwise building. “As much as we love the Tower and all you stone-cold weirdos in it, it’s time to throw our weight behind the revitalization of downtown Fresno,” Olguin wrote. She added that Hashtag will offer its current members a free month of membership at the new downtown location.
Also relocating to the Van Ness-Mono building will be Bitwise Industries’ own offices as well as its Shift3 Technologies, which provides technical and software services to local businesses, and its Geekwise Academy computer-code training program. Those moves will free up smaller office spaces for budding technology firms in Bitwise’s original 8,400-square-foot Mural District building at San Joaquin and L streets, north of downtown Fresno.