Changes coming to COhatch Springfield - The Market

The community will soon see a number of changes coming to COhatch Springfield – The Market, including new bars, a new restaurant and new seating, as the business approaches its three-year anniversary this June.

“We’re going to be revamping some spaces as we look to get back to our roots and create more of a community feel,” says Rachel Erie, operations and talent manager for COhatch Springfield. “We have some exciting changes coming, and its an exciting time.”

The two COhatch-owned bar spaces will be shifting management in early June.

For the first three years, one bar space was managed under The Market Bar brand, created by Rod Hatfield and Andrew Lazear. Lazear also managed the North High Brewing taproom space.

New management will be running both spaces under a new bar and taproom namesake, to be announced soon.

“COhatch is here to be welcoming and serve as a community space, and we want it to be a great place to come down with your family and friends and enjoy your time,” Erie says.

She described the new bar and taproom concepts to be “quick-pour service” and says the taproom portion will feature a variety of craft beers. The updated hours for the bar are set as:
  • Monday through Thursday, 3 to 10 p.m.
  • Friday, noon to 11 p.m.
  • Saturday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
  • Closed Sunday
Chido’s Tacos – the popular Springfield-based food truck – will be the newest restaurant to take residence inside The Market. Chido’s will be located in the area that formerly housed The Painted Pepper, which will be returning to its roots as a food truck.

In addition to the new restaurant and bar shifts, customers will also see some seating changes during the next few months. Instead of the larger tables in the main market space, four-tops will be added to make the area feel more open and provide for additional seating, Erie says.

Bar seating will also be added to the new bar and taproom spaces in response to customer requests, says Pat Williams, who serves as COhatch Springfield’s general manager and operating partner, along with his wife, Nancy.

“We are taking feedback and making changes based on what the customers want,” he says. “We heard people, and we’re making changes based on what customers want in the spaces. We’re pretty unique in that we have the flexibility to be able to make that happen.”

COhatch Springfield opened in 2020 as a space for coworking and for-lease office space, and it is part of a network of COhatch coworking locations within Ohio and nationally.

The Market is a unique concept specific to COhatch Springfield and was designed to be an incubator space for local small businesses interested in taking a shot at a brick-and-mortar location, Erie says. It’s a throwback to the former Myers Market that was historically housed in the building.

The concept allows business owners to learn about business development while growing their concept and audience, she says.

“We’re built to be a great starting place for businesses. Having these spaces makes it possible for newer businesses to see if their concept can work,” Erie says. “It allows owners to work through all the parts of having a physical business location, like money management, managing people and supplies.

“This is the perfect stepping stone for businesses to see if having this kind of location is feasible for them in the future.”

After that launch, businesses are able to take a bigger leap into their own stand-alone storefronts or larger locations, or to go whichever alternate route works best for them when they’re ready, she says.

For the outgoing creators of The Market Bar, that transition will mean focusing on other Downtown Springfield projects.

“We cherished the last three years,” Hatfield says. “It was such a great learning experience and a community development experience for us.”

The Market Bar will serve its last cocktails at COhatch on Saturday, June 3, he says. The day will include a live performance from The Buttermilk Biscuit Boys.

For Hatfield, who fills many roles, including co-owner of multimedia company Hatch New Media and The Turner Foundation’s creative director, the shift allows him more time to focus on other ventures.

In late 2021, Hatfield purchased The State Theater with a group of local investors and has been working on renovations to get the space back to functional, fulltime community use ever since.

It boasted its first live music performances earlier this month during IndieCraft, and Hatfield says continued investments in the space will have it ready for more visitors in time for this winter’s Holiday in the City celebrations.

The State coming back to life will continue to be a major focus for Hatfield – as will, he says, a new restaurant and bar concept he’s working with a team to launch in Downtown Springfield by the end of the year. But specifics about that new business and its location are still to come.

“The beauty for me is that I’m so passionate about this city because I’m a fourth generation Springfield native. I’ve traveled the world for work, and I lived out west for 30 years, and as an artist, I see Downtown Springfield as a 3D sculpture with moving pieces,” Hatfield says. “I love working with my friends and in my community and connecting the dots for the betterment of Downtown.”

Hatfield says he takes pride in the time he and Lazear spent building The Market Bar into an award-winning craft-cocktail location, and in the hundreds of musicians, comedy acts and other entertainers he worked with as performers in The Exchange space at COhatch through the years.

“The roots of COhatch have grown deeper and more fertile,” Hatfield says. “It went from a time talking about the possibility of COhatch, and now it’s strong and firm and up and running and will continue being an incubator for other businesses.

“We’re so thankful to COhatch for the collaboration, and we’re graduating and moving on to these other endeavors.”
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Read more articles by Natalie Driscoll.