Sunday, October 13, 2013

Third Ward Closes Down Suddenly With A No Refund Policy

No Refunds Offered After 3rd Ward Closes Suddenly
Due to financial pressure the 3rd Ward, both in Kensington and in Philadelphia, are closing shop. The space in the 3rd Ward was supposed to be a place for people to be able to experiment with whatever they were curious about, from robotics to drawing. The facility was brand new and exquisite, but it seems the costs, especially in Philadelphia, were a challenge they could not overcome.

A recent on-line fundraising campaign (now extinguished) explained the need for more dollars to flow into the enterprise:

    1. Our revenue at the Brooklyn location fell as a result of a change we made to one of our membership products earlier this year.

    2. The new location in Philadelphia is requiring more capital than expected to achieve profitability or reach cash flow break-even.

    3. The development of the Culinary project required advance spending.

The events director at 3rd Ward Philly commented about the 3rd Ward before it closed, that:

"I feel like it's our baby," he said. "We all really believe in it and we all know how much potential there is."

The closure was sudden and unexpected. A DesignPhiladelphi event was scheduled for the same night that 3rd Ward closed, and that event was also suddenly cancelled.

The Gothamist reported on an email posted by 3rd Ward officials to their membership at about 10pm on Wednesday night requesting them to come and

"collect their belongings before our doors officially close on October 11th." The email added that "unfortunately, you will not have an opportunity to use your membership after today at 6pm, and we will not be able to refund any payments made for membership services that have not been fully utilized before that time."

The lack of ability to refund membership fees applies to everyone, even those who only recently paid for their membership and did not have a chance to use any of their membership privileges.