LAKELAND, Fla. — Hurricane Irma almost ruined expansion plans for Catapult, Lakeland's popular co-working space, but leaders of the project say they're back on schedule to open the new facility on October 1, 2019.

"We'll have a commercial kitchen, a maker space, and a co-working facility all-in-one, with educational programs to help take their business to the next level," said Executive Director Christina Graham. 

The new facility will allow Catapult to serve more than 300 entrepreneurs, double the amount the current facility serves right now, according to Graham. 

"The impact is tremendous," Graham explained. "I think there's a lot of opportunities for people to learn how to use equipment to start a business in a way they couldn't previously do without equipment in our facility."

Catapult is partnering with The Shop.Build out of Silicon Valley for the maker space. Its CEO, Dan Rasure, said it will give people access to equipment that's hard to come by. 

"The price of equipment has continued to go up and access has continued to drop at the same time, as schools have continued to reduce industrial art," Rasure said. "We just don’t have access to equipment we used to have.” 

"There’s a lot of entrepreneurs out there that need help prototyping a product, and so we could have people in that maker space help do that for them,” Graham said.  

Graham said they’ve invested $20 million into the project. 

"It's huge," she said. "There is nothing like it that we've seen in the country and especially in central Florida. This entrepreneurial spirit is growing and we’re excited to be a part of it."

According to Graham, access to co-working space starts at $125/month, access to office space starts at $325/month, and access to the maker space starts at $150/month.

To learn more about Catapult, visit