Work Station

I work remotely and I live in upstate, New York very near Albany. While working from my home is great, I also like to get out of the house: change of scenery, meet with others, etc.

Here’s a list (presented alphabetically) of places in the “capital district” I have found conducive to working remotely. As I work in the software industry, my considerations are focused on amenities that support technology workers. Maybe I’ll see you at…



Professor Java’s Coffee Sanctuary, Albany NY

217 Wolf Rd, Albany, NY 12205 (map)
(518) 435-0843

This is a frequent haunt. I tend to work here all day as there is plenty of seating, many power outlets, the Wi-Fi is strong, and the food and coffee is great. In fact, I am often here so much and for so long (8 hours) that I feel guilty–so while the staff has never made a comment to me–I will sometimes leave during busy times to free up a table for their lunch crowd.

While I can spend hours plugging away along, it is also a great spot for meetings, or even hosting events, e.g. Meet-ups, etc.

The staff is great!

Infrastructure

  • Free Wi-Fi: 17.27 Mbps Down / 17.55 Mbps Up (2016/08/04)
  • Power: 10+, many with power bar.

Space

  • Dedicated working spaces: 20, small (two person) tables distributed around three different spaces.
  • Shared working spaces: 5, tables for four, two groups of arm chairs.
  • Collaborative working spaces: tables can be moved to seat larger parties, dedicated meeting room for 20+ (reservation needed).

Vibe

  • Local coffee/espresso shop with breakfast and lunch.
  • Quiet in off hours, very busy during peak hours (breakfast/lunch).
  • Always seems to be seating available
  • Business crowd: many people working alone or in small groups on laptops, business meetings, lunch meetings etc. I’ve met many tech/software folks here.

Transit

  • Free Parking
  • Bus line: CDTA, Route 190
    • South: Wolf Rd & Ulenski Dr., Stop ID: 10511
    • North: Wolf Rd & Ulenski Dr., Stop ID: 10516


Starbucks, Newton Plaza, Loudonville NY

594 New Loudon Rd, Latham, NY 12110 (map)
(518) 783-4544

I only go here because it’s the closest place to my home and it provides what I need to just get work done. I’ve always found a place to sit, and I am left alone by the staff and customers.  If you’re looking for somewhere to just focus for three, five, or seven hours, this is it. Order a drink, plug in, put your headphones on and you should be all set.

Infrastructure

  • Free Wi-Fi: 19.28 Mbps Down / 5.68 Mbps Up (2016/07/07)
  • Power: 3 electrical outlets, one with power bar.

Space

  • Dedicated working spaces: 10, small tables distributed around the space.
  • Shared working spaces: 4 group of arm chairs.
  • Collaborative working spaces: 1 large table (seats 6-8).

Vibe

  • Typical Starbucks chain
  • Most customers take “to go”
  • Always seems to be seating available
  • Close to Siena College so a few college students / faculty
  • Suburban area so, mom’s and families
  • Seems popular for local business people to meet

Transit

  • Free Parking
  • Bus line: CDTA, Route 182
    • New Loudon Rd. & Homestead Dr.
    • New Loudon Rd. & Stewart’s Shop


Tierra Coffee Roasters

1038 Madison Ave, Albany, NY 12208 (map)
(518) 621-7299

Tierra Roasters recently moved two doors down (to the other side of the Madison Theater) from their original location (I hear it is being remodeled as a dedicated restaurant for the evening crowd). The previous space offered a breakfast and lunch menu along with coffee/espresso and even beer/wine. However the new location only offers coffee/espresso and baked goods. They also have an ice cream counter and sell organic dry goods: in addition to coffee beans and teas, nuts, grains, granola, trail mix, etc. They also have a large used book collection.

I actually like the new menu (and atmosphere) much better, focusing on just coffee and small bites, as the previous space had very poor ventilation, and there was a persistent odor of bacon smoke–you’d leave there smelling of burnt bacon and feeling a bit greasy. I’m not sure if it is as conducive for those of us looking to work all day, but it is a much nicer place to try.

I’ll also mention, the staff is very accommodating and apparently fine with me working for several hours.

Infrastructure

  • Free Wi-Fi: 10.16 Mbps Down / 0.72 Mbps Up (2016/08/01)
  • Power: 1 electrical outlet (two sockets).

Space

  • Dedicated working spaces: 1 table seating four, 2 tables seating two (only one of these has close access to the one electrical outlet)
  • Shared working spaces: 1 group of two arm chairs and a sofa.
  • Collaborative working spaces: none.

Vibe

  • Not sure if this is a coffee shop, ice cream parlor, bookstore or small organic grocer.
  • Very clean and quiet–nice ambiance .
  • While there is not much seating, there does always seem to be a place to site and work (as long as you do not need power).
  • Most customers seem to take their coffee and muffins to go.
  • Close to St. Rose College so a few college students / faculty
  • Urban area, in a local that is trying to revitalize itself.

Transit

  • Free Parking along wall of Laundromat in Price Chopper lot.
  • Bus line: CDTA, Route 114
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