McKENZIE, a boutique design, build and custom fabrication firm, has transformed the historical New Providence Lodge building in Overtown into Tribe Urban Innovation Lab and Cowork, a new co-working space that will primarily focus on serving local, African American youth. Tribe will be an innovation hub focused on serving local African American youth along with the greater South Florida entrepreneur community. The historical New Providence Lodge building, located at 937 NW 3rd Avenue, once housed a Freemason chapter during the Jim Crow era and is owned by real estate giant Michael Simkins. Tribe is owned by Felecia Hatcher and Derick Pearson who are both successful entrepreneurs working to provide opportunities for African Americans to thrive in the tech industry. Simkins partnered with Tribe to successfully obtain a City of Miami CRA grant to commission McKENZIE to design and build-out the space. In addition to office space, Tribe will house Code Fever and BlackTech Week, two nonprofit organizations founded by Hatcher and Pearson that help build and diversify startup ecosystems and support African American entrepreneurs, as well as several black-owned businesses.
The Allapattah-based McKENZIE managed the design and construction of the adaptive reuse project transforming the two-story, 3,700 SF venue into a modern, open-design concept that promotes creativity and idea sharing. McKENZIE preserved many of the original design elements in honor of the building’s history. The original wood ceiling and steel beams were purposely left exposed to provide visual contrast to the collaborative workspace’s more clean and modern finishes. Tribe features design elements that are in tune with the evolving workplace and the needs of today’s entrepreneurial workforce. The multi-use space features seven offices, several conference rooms, classrooms, a library, common area, collaborative event and hangout spaces, maker lab, and a kitchen built by McKENZIE’s Craft division.
“Proper design is crucial for co-working spaces as today’s employees are looking for a work environment that’s vibrant, inspirational and dynamic, not your standard office space,” said MCKENZIE’s Design Officer Jose Ortez. “Our design of Tribe creates this atmosphere while maintaining a flexible work space that can evolve with time and continue to serve the local community for years to come.”