Five Impact Organizations Move to the Water Cooler at Dallas’ Future-Focused Pegasus Park

California-based Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation—a venture philanthropy group—will expand to Dallas with the move. Dallas-based founding tenants Commit Partnership, The Dallas Foundation, United to Learn, and Uplift Education served as thought partners during a multi-year planning process.

Prospective Water Cooler tenants may receive reduced rent and access to a 'What-Else-Do-You-Need-to-be-Awesome' fund.

Earlier this week, we shared details on a mixed-use social purpose project called Pegasus Park. One major component of this future-focused redevelopment is Water Cooler, a 150,000-square-foot space designed to help nonprofit, philanthropic, and social impact organizations through subsidized rent and amenities.

The office space sponsored by Lyda Hill Philanthropies through a partnership with Pegasus Park developer J. Small Investments has announced its five founding tenants: Commit Partnership, The Dallas Foundation, The Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, United to Learn, and Uplift Education.

The four Dallas-based organizations served as thought partners during the multi-year planning process and helped guide the program, according to a statement.

Although Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation is based in California, the venture philanthropy group plans to expand to Texas through its presence at Pegasus Park. According to a statement, the foundation has also made a commitment to raise a $3 to $5 million DRK Lonestar Fund for future investments in Texas-based early stage, high-impact social enterprises.

Uplift Education, a nonprofit that says it has the largest, free public charter school network in DFW, has already started moving its team to a temporary space at Pegasus Park while the office is completed in the main tower. 

“We’ve long believed that bringing together diverse, best-in-class nonprofits is a first step in fostering collaboration and ingenuity,” Lyda Hill Philanthropies founder Lyda Hill said in a statement. “And as we face these unprecedented and exceptionally challenging times, never has it been more important for people to solve problems together.”

Working at the Water Cooler

Water Cooler was “named for the proverbial (and now nostalgic) gathering spot known to foster relationships and improve productivity,” according to a statement. The space may be able to help provide this atmosphere through its application process looking for an array of tenants “large and small, new and old, highly focused and broad in scope—representing a wide range of social issues.”

Water Cooler tenants are provided with collaboration opportunities, additional community investment opportunities, and more visibility, according to a statement.

Tenants will also have subsidized rent, access to a “What-Else-Do-You-Need-to-Be-Awesome Fund” for furniture and infrastructure, amenities including a conference center, and shared services designed to accelerate their missions, according to a statement. 

“Our nonprofit colleagues deserve a state-of-the-art environment as they work tirelessly to solve some of our world’s biggest challenges. Having spent so much time investing in nonprofit capacity and infrastructure, we believe cutting-edge facilities and space designed for collaboration are key ingredients to accelerate impact,” Margaret Black, director at Lyda Hill Philanthropies, said in a statement.

Water Cooler tenants have three flexible move-in options from private offices to company headquarters: a move-in ready option offering private offices up to 5,000 square feet, a move-in ready co-working option also up to 5,000 square feet, and fully customized spaces requiring a minimum of 5,000 square feet. The interior and exterior areas throughout Pegasus Park will be equipped with social-distancing and high-level cleaning protocols when it opens in 2021.

Tenants with fully customized spaces are eligible for philanthropic grants of up to $50,000 provided by Lyda Hill Philanthropies through the “What-Else-Do-You-Need-to-Be-Awesome Fund.” Those who choose the other two options can apply for a grant worth up to $25,000.

Applications are now being accepted for prospective tenants with move-in dates from 2021 through 2023. August 31 is the initial deadline. For more information, go here.

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