Five years ago, we opened the Bodgery’s doors to the public for the first time, providing our community with access to workspace, tools, learning, and friends that they might not otherwise have. Since that day, we have opened the space to the public twice a week, welcoming over 8,100 community members. We’ve also had hundreds of guests from all over the US, arriving from Alaska to Florida, Maine to California, and everywhere in between.
As a community-focused makerspace, our goal is to help people learn and grow through making. Guests can use (most of) our tools for free, and enjoy a collaborative, creative space to build, repair, and learn. In addition to our Open Shop nights, we’ve hosted over 800 workshops and meet-ups training the community in using tools and learning skills.
As our membership has grown over the years, we have outgrown our current space and must move to fit our new members, tools, and projects. We have finally found our new home on the former Oscar Mayer campus in Madison, now known as OM Station. This site has a rich history as the industrial and manufacturing heart of Madison, and we are proud to be bringing tools and industry back to what was once the factory’s maintenance shop.
We will more than quadruple our current space, with dedicated classroom and meeting space, a large woodshop, a bright and clean craft and fiber workspace , and a huge workshop for welding, machining, CNC, and jewelry making. We will be able to offer studio space for people to call their own in pursuit of their making hobbies and create new businesses. This space creates many opportunities to do things we’ve only dreamed of. We have many plans for new programming, community outreach, and events. We are ready to move in by June 1st.
Unfortunately, our new home is not quite ready for us. In order to bring electricity to the space in all the combinations our tools require, we’ve been told it will cost $25,000 for a licensed contractor to complete the electrical build-out. As die-hard DIY’ers, it’s difficult to not do it ourselves, but when it comes to commercial electric, we find ourselves with no other option.
Over the last few years, we have saved up a solid moving fund which will take care of most of our other needs: plumbing, HVAC, IT infrastructure, new workbenches, additional furniture, fresh paint, and more tools. However, the electrical build-out is more than we can afford on our own, and so we’re turning to the community for help. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated.
Thank you for helping us to empower not only you, but all of Madison to discover the joy of making, and to offer new opportunities to makers of all skill levels.
Visit us at http://www.thebodgery.org/