Mountain View, CA, hackerspace Hacker Dojo needs help with facility improvements! Apparently code violations are threatening their ability to offer classes and they’re turning to the crowd to help them out.

We are currently not allowed in more than half of the space we pay rent on, not permitted to hold large classes, and not permitted to hold many classes at once. This is due to restrictions placed by the city of Mountain View on the Hacker Dojo. We are looking to lift these restrictions by updating the building, and to create some amazing new resources for our community such as a dedicated event space and makerspace/design studio.

If you want to help out, they’ve launched a Kickstarter campaign to help with the cost of renovations. They’ve passed their original funding goal and are now looking at expanding their original renovation plans to make the facility even more useful to the community.

If you want to learn more, there’s a great NY Times article that gives you more background.

John Baichtal

John Baichtal

My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal

  • Poet

    This location looks to be a commercial type zoned rental. I would press the landlord to get onto the code requirements. If you fine folk own the place I would consider potential regional resources. Colleges and Universities may have grants or endowments relating to community education and or engineering/ technology related locations in the community. Having students and staff members as members of the Hacker space wouldn’t hurt. Home schooling groups need places to get student elective requirements. You could become a place for them to be their shop location. Rent or dues could be collected by those students. Youth groups like the 4H and Scouts could also need this kind of place to learn in. The local public school may also find renting your space to be a cost saving measure. Besides youth you get involved will pass on the DIY ideal. Look around where you are as sometimes stuff exists right next door. Good luck

  • Robert Welch (@BatteryRandD)

    I’ve been studying this issue as I travel to different Make spaces. Images posted on various Make space web pages reveal that Hacker Dojo is obviously not the worst of the offenders. So it is a matter of time before other spaces will find that they are in the same situation as Hacker Dojo.

    That being said, Hacker Dojo failed to apply for a permit and failed to exercise due diligence with regards to the use of commercial property.

    Referring to the National Fire Protection Association Standard 101 – The Life Safety Code regarding “Occupancy Loading.”

    Business 100 ft^2/person Gross
    Vocational 50 ft^2/person Net

    Also the 50 occupant person limit – exit doors that swing out.

    Requirements that need to be addressed in developing a sustainable business model. Failure to do so masks the issue that Make spaces may only thrive in a few select locations.

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