ITHACA, N.Y.—Covenstead Workspaces was created with the goal of restoring a sense of community among professionals seeking a coworking space, with an emphasis on making women feel comfortable.

Co-owners Audra Bartlett and Christine Brouwer were inspired to start the woman-centered workspace last winter with the goal of creating a more inspiring place to work that also allowed for a renewed sense of community. Though the space is owned by two women and centered around women, all are welcome to join.

With the help of friends, family and the community, the space was recently renovated and decorated to fit the needs for productivity, with plenty of comfy seating, desks, a coffee station and natural light.

At the ribbon-cutting ceremony celebrating the space’s official opening, Jennifer Tavares, CEO of the Tompkins Chamber, welcomed the co-owners to downtown.

“Congratulations and thank you for doing this — it’s a very needed investment in our downtown. We need more spaces that are going to cultivate entrepreneurial activities and support small businesses,” Tavares said.

Downtown Ithaca Alliance Board President Ashley Cake said that she is “thrilled to watch this project come to fruition,” and that it’s a “wonderful investment in downtown.”

Tom Knipe, deputy director of economic development, echoed the sentiments, adding that he believes the space will be “wildly successful.”

Covenstead is located at 403 N. Aurora Street, and more information can be found here.

Zoë Freer-Hessler is the digital editor/reporter for the Ithaca Voice. Joining in November 2021, she has covered a wide range of topics related to local news. She can be reached at,...