For our first months, the library provided our basic needs, and it really helped in getting our startup off the ground. However we continuously felt the place could have been an even better environment for starting a web-business.
Here is from our own experience, what startups need;
1) location: A place to work, that is quiet and ergonomic, It also helps if it’s a nice and inspiring environment
-Good working desks, decent chairs
2) knowledge. Startups have a big need for knowledge. I have met few entrepreneurs that are experts in all fields that concern a startup. Lots can of course be found online, but some good books and specialized magazines still turn out to be helpful. Then there is also all sorts of information from local governments and instances, such as organizations like chamber of commerce.
-There could be several racks of books that are of special interest for startup entrepreneurs. For example books on business, design or software.
-Events with speakers on startup topics could be organized.
3) social environment.
Then there is the social aspect. Though we all know the story of the lone genius in his dorm room or garage, in real life most startups thrive in an environment where they meet like-minded souls, and also run into surprising new faces. and the network effect can definitely help startups:
Startups can learn from each other and support each other in the process. The feeling of being part of a community also really helps to motivate.
Creating such places in our cities from scratch would be very expensive. However there is a great infrastructure of places designed to learn and grow; Public libraries.
This initiative also benefits the libraries, which suffer from declining visitor numbers and relevancy. Through this concept libraries can once again become important places in our societies. T he library gets a whole new image, making it an exciting and vibrant environment for people to go. A place where you can work during the day and when leaving for home pick up a good book or magazine of interest!