Intrepid KWLUG members have diligently searched for a new physical home for our group. Thus far we have two candidates that are likely available.
100 Garment Street
This is a community meeting room on the third floor of a condo. A KWLUG member lives in the building and has agreed to host us each month.
The building is a 5-10 minute walk from Victoria and King in Kitchener, so is close to downtown.
Capacity: 15 people comfortably, 20 at most. The space is pretty small and there is furniture there we cannot move.
Availability: There is no formal booking system, so there is some chance we could be displaced. However, the host thinks this is not likely.
Reliability: We are reliant on the host to be present for every meeting.
Access: The building is wheelchair accessible. To get to the meeting room one has to be let in the door (there is controlled access) and go up an elevator. It is not clear whether we can put up signs on meeting nights, but the host thinks it may be possible.
Washrooms: There is a washroom right beside the meeting room.
Internet: There is public wifi, and possibly a second wifi we can use for streaming. There is no wired internet available.
Parking: The City of Kitchener operates a parking lot on Bramm Street, which is free after 5pm.This is directly behind the condo complex. There is an underground parking garage at the condo which costs $2.50 for 30 minutes, so the average KWLUG attendee can expect to pay $12.50 per meeting. There is also a small amount of on-street parking on Oak Street.
Transit: there is an LRT station at Victoria and King St.
Streaming/Equipment: We would have to provide a projector, and whatever equipment we want to use for streaming. The host may be able to store some equipment at their condo, but maybe not a lot.
COVID Safety: The room is small. There will not be much interaction with non-KWLUG members. HVAC status is unknown.
University of Waterloo Dana Porter Library
This is a classroom space in the Dana Porter library ("the sugar cube") at the University of Waterloo. The specific space is LIB 329. It is being offered by a KWLUG member who works at the university.
Capacity: 25 people. It is a full classroom with row seating.
Availability: It should be fairly reliably available, although there is no booking system. There is another classroom we might be able to use if we are displaced.
Reliability: Unclear. We are reliant on a UW employee, faculty member, or student club to host us. The proposing host has offered to host us, or help look for replacements if they are unable to attend. There are a few other people who work at UW.
Access: The building is wheelchair accessible. There are elevators to the space. We will probably not be able to put up signs. There is a clickable floor plan of the library's third floor to help people find their way around.
Washrooms: There is a washroom on the same floor.
Internet: There is wifi available that requires a name and email to use. People who are affiliated with a university can use Eduroam. There may be some chance of getting our own SSID but this is unlikely. Wired network for streaming might be possible, but is not arranged.
Parking: There is one parking lot -- Lot E, adjacent to the Waterloo-Laurier LRT station at Seagram Drive -- that is free after 6pm. This is about a 700m walk from the library. There are paid parking lots for $5/evening. Lots D and A are the closest to the library.
Transit: there is an LRT station at the university.
Streaming/Equipment: There is a projector with HDMI input. We would have to provide other streaming equipment, and carry it back and forth to meetings.
COVID Safety: The University of Waterloo is a busy campus, so there will be some interaction with students. As of this writing, the university is committed to MERV-13 filters with at least four air exchanges per hour per classroom.
Community Hub at St John the Evangelist
This is not available Monday evenings. It could be a possibility if we were willing to switch meeting nights.
SDG Hub in Downtown Kitchener
This is a new space. The booking fee for the large room is $400/hour. There is a smaller room for less, but they currently do not do evening bookings.
Public library spaces
These may be available but not reliability. Prices vary from $50 at some remote libraries in Kitchener (eg Forest Heights), to $150 for two hours at the Waterloo Public Library.
Churches, Public Schools
In addition to a booking fee we would need to purchase liability insurance. This may be possible but it seemed frustrating the last time we looked because we are not a registered organization.
The space is inaccessible (on the second floor) and there are no large meeting spaces (maybe 15 people at most?). A KWartzlab member would have to host.
The Working Centre
Neither the Queen St Commons building nor St Johnâs Kitchen is available. The front space at 58 Queen may be available, but it is small and not that accessible.
Other Places to Investigate
Workhaus or other coworking spaces
This would likely be expensive, but may be worth investigating.
These are likely not reliable, and there would be an expectation that people purchase food and drink.