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TechShop Pittsburgh to stay open a month longer as optimism for funding grows

Aaron Aupperlee
| Thursday, July 6, 2017, 3:39 p.m.
Members work at stations inside TechShop in Bakery Square Thursday, September 19, 2013.
James Knox | Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Members work at stations inside TechShop in Bakery Square Thursday, September 19, 2013.

TechShop Pittsburgh will stay open a month longer and won't send its equipment out of state as the company tries to find funding.

“We have been working closely with a number of Pittsburgh stakeholders and foundations eager to participate on some level in keeping TechShop Pittsburgh open for years to come as a licensed location,” TechShop CEO Dan Woods said in a statement. “While we don't have any definitive deals in place yet, I'm happy to say that we're making excellent progress and that a committed consortium of nonprofit partners resolved to finding a long-term solution to keep TechShop in Pittsburgh is emerging.”

Woods did not identify the nonprofit partners working to keep TechShop in Pittsburgh.

Woods said he has worked out an agreement on a short-term lease extension with its landlord, Walnut Capital.

He said he has put on hold plans to send TechShop Pittsburgh's equipment to a new shop in Brooklyn because of the conversations happening in Pittsburgh.

“We hope this decision will help build confidence and buy everyone some much needed time. While considerable work remains to be done, I'm cautiously optimistic that we will be able to work out a solution,” Woods said.

The Bakery Square shop that gives members access to 3D printers, laser cutters, welding bays, a wood shop and more to create prototypes and products has launched several Pittsburgh startups and has helped to grow the city's tech community.

Woods had announced that TechShop Pittsburgh would close Sept. 1 unless it found at least $360,000 a year from a partner or partners to stay open. That would cover about 15 to 20 percent of shop's operating costs. The location loses about $30,000 a month.

Aaron Aupperlee is a Tribune-Review staff writer.

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