Craig and Maureen

ROCHESTER, NY – Metro Cowork founder Craig Webster has welcomed 29 Design Studio owner Maureen Ballatori as a partner in the popular Greater Rochester coworking venture. 

In light of current events related to COVID-19, Metro is focusing on building a strong sense of community for its members rather than just facilitating a shared workspace. Webster and Ballatori plan to immediately begin enhancing Metro’s event programming and membership culture to support the small businesses of the region.  Metro will launch a new “Ask Me Anything” series with innovative business and thought leaders. 

“Metro is going to launch its own version of coworking. Its definitely going to grow with more locations, expanded amenities and even offer a coworking model to other developers down the road,” says Webster. “We’re going to use this current crisis to pivot and launch the next phase of Metro.”

“Making it possible for the small business community to collaborate virtually is so important right now with the isolation of social distancing,” says Ballatori.

Coworking locations are workspaces that freelancers, entrepreneurs, and remote employees share. They are growing in popularity as businesses adapt to remote workplaces and freelance workforces. Globally, there are projected to be 26,300 coworking spaces in 2020, according to the 2019 Global Coworking Survey.

The newly-formed Metro Cowork partnership connects two enterprising business leaders in the Greater Rochester and Finger Lakes communities. Metro Cowork has five locations throughout Rochester including its headquarters on East Avenue, Metro Park in Brighton,   Made on State, The High Falls Business Center in High Falls and two smaller locations in Webster and Irondequoit. Port 100 Cowork, the Geneva coworking space that Ballatori also recently acquired, will become “powered by Metro” and share programming with the locations in the Rochester area.

Webster also has ownership interests in the multiple other entities including Webster Properties, Luxury Vacation Rentals, & The Men’s Room, Barber Lounge and Spa.  Ballatori is the founder of 29 Design Studio Branding and Marketing agency.

“I’ve always been a community-driven person. And I believe in the power of coworking to connect people together,” says Ballatori. “After spending the last 3 years running Port 100 Cowork in the Finger Lakes, I’ve seen that collaboration realized time after time. I’m so excited to bring that collaboration to the Metro Cowork community.”

“I knew deep in my gut that she’s the right one for the business. She’s a strong businesswoman and we were looking for someone to be the face of the company. The company and I have rallied around her,” says Webster.

With Ballatori on board, Metro Cowork is launching an “Ask Me Anything (AMA)” virtual event series. Experts in finance, leadership, innovation, marketing and more will share their insights and answer questions live via Zoom. Topics include:

  • April 9: Finance featuring Julie Haers, Daniel Biviano, and Jim Ferrari from The Establishment
  • April 14: Leadership featuring Maria Kast of CORE Leadership
  • April 16: Innovation featuring Michael Rawlins of Walt Disney Corporation
  • April 22: Marketing featuring Maureen Ballatori of 29 Design Studio 
  • April 29: Paid Media featuring Sean McKay of SiteHub

Talks will take place from Noon to 1 pm. Registration details are available on the Metro Cowork Facebook page. For more information on Metro Cowork, visit


Metro is changing the landscape for small businesses in Rochester, NY through coworking, collaboration, and community building. Throughout its five locations, Metro Cowork offers shared office space for remote workers, entrepreneurs, freelancers and small businesses. For more information visit