In 2012, the founders of Forge Greensboro were meeting in coffee shops. They were a group of hobbyists, tinkerers, artisans, and students who wanted to work and collaborate together by merging their tools into one place and build a community makerspace. Creating an open, diverse, and affordable atmosphere was very important to them, so when they incorporated in 2013, they did so as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, capable of accepting donations and contributions. They found a space on 115 West Lewis Street, in an almost forgotten area of downtown. Because the building was once the local blacksmith, the founders coined the new makerspace “The Forge.”
Almost three years later, membership grew beyond the capacity of the 3400 square foot space, and the management workload was growing for the complete volunteer-run organization. In the fall of 2016, with West Lewis Street transformed into a vibrant downtown attraction, the Board of Directors and membership agreed that Forge Greensboro needed more space and a full-time employee. That winter, the new executive director, and the members moved the entire makerspace down the street to 219 West Lewis Street. This building, once the auxiliary livery stables, increased the facility to 8,000 square feet. Visible from Eugene Street, the gateway to downtown Greensboro, Forge Greensboro’s increased space is now capable of hosting several startup entrepreneurs, college student projects, artisan activities, and educational programs.