A proposal that would move HeatSync Labs to a vacant storefront at 140 W. Main St. in downtown Mesa goes up before the hackerspace’s board of directors on Thursday.
The nonprofit collaborative workspace and resource for techies and tinkerers is currently based at Gangplank in downtown Chandler, but quickly outgrew the space and has been looking for a new location since the year began. Options have included elsewhere in Chandler, downtown Phoenix, Tempe or Mesa.
When Mesa recently launched its iMesa social brainstorming website, attracting a technology incubator like HeatSync quickly rocketed to prominence with the most votes of any proposal on the menu.
Landing at 140 W. Main would put HeatSync and its patrons in the heart of a growing downtown culture of vibrance that includes the Mesa Arts Center, private galleries, monthly Second Friday block parties, and pop culture and steampunk gathering spots like Evermore Nevermore and Gotham City Comics & Coffee. In addition, last week the Valley’s own Midnite Movie Mamacita announced plans to open a new cinema, the Royale, in downtown Mesa near the Nile Theater after years of staging film events at venues like Chandler Cinemas and Tempe’s MADCAP.
The location in the proposal HeatSync’s board will consider occupies 2,000 square feet, about a quarter of which would serve as “dirty” (edit — see comments below) workshop space for the hacker types who comprise its membership and need access to such technology as a laser cutter and 3-D printer; the rest would host presentations, fundraisers, workshops and other events. A two-year lease agreement would cost the nonprofit about $1,300 per month, and the city is offering to work with the lab on electrical upgrades.
UPDATE: Board members voted Thursday night to approve the proposed lease. READ MORE.