Welcome to NuSpark

NuSpark was a multi-faceted start-up resource connecting the New River and Roanoke valleys of Virginia with the goal of creating 10 new start-ups and generating $10 million in cash flow within two years. It was a work and collaboration space for innovators with pre-launch start-ups. NuSpark helped big thinkers build their big ideas into new ventures in technology, application of technology to social, and new commercial ideas.

The NuSpark User Manifesto Stated:

  • Create and innovate
  • Always add value
  • Encourage others to express their thoughts and opinions
  • Actively listen to feedback
  • Hold information of others in confidence
  • Validate ideas with customer input
  • Don't be afraid to fail and try something different
  • Separate your opinions from customer and market facts
  • Look for opportunities
  • Respect others in the space
  • Respect and contribute to the community space.  As a user, you share responsibility for the health and success of this user community


To learn more about what NuSpark was and the services it offered, read the former FAQs:

What is NuSpark?
NuSpark is a creative space open to anyone over the age of 18 to work on an idea and further it toward commercialization or toward implementation of a socially responsible initiative.  It is open to anyone in the Roanoke - Blacksburg region.  

When is NuSpark open?
General operating hours are noon to 9 pm daily.  Project work teams can apply for 24/7 access via a keycard unique to them.

How is intellectual property treated in NuSpark? 
The NuSpark space is not on the VT campus and it is funded through the Corporate Research Center and other sources.  Therefore, the intellectual property created in the space, is the property of the owner.  It is imperative the owner of the IP protect their intellectual property while working within NuSpark and outside of it.

How much does it cost?  
NuSpark is rent free for teams, although teams are asked to contribute to a general supply fund, such as ink cartridges, paper, etc. on the honor system.  The more of these materials a team uses, the more money they should contribute to re-stock the supplies.  Teams must pay for their own keycard for access if they do not have one, which is $15 per person.  Teams with keycard access are also required to contribute 4 hours a week to help staff NuSpark and to complete the Lean Launch Pad sessions specifically for NuSpark teams to help them realize their goals of creating a new venture. 

How many teams will be in NuSpark?
The number of teams depends on the team's venture.  We have had as few as 5 teams and as many as 14 teams.

How much space would be available to each team?
Teams assigned space have an area of approximately 8 feet x 12 feet.  If the dedicated areas are full, agile teams can work in the main space but would not have a dedicated area to leave materials.   The space is very fluid, meaning it can change with the team requirements.

How do I secure my stuff?
Lockers are available to designated teams accepted to work in the space for secure storage.

How long can a team stay in NuSpark?
Teams will be reviewed quarterly to determine if progress is being made toward their goals.  Assuming the team is making progress, a designated team can stay in a dedicated space until they reach $500,000 in sales revenue/funding or up to 12 months, whichever occurs first.
How do we know if our team is accepted and how soon can we start in NuSpark?
After applying, you will be contacted within a week regarding acceptance into NuSpark.  Once accepted, you can obtain keycard access.

Are there age requirements to access and use the NuSpark space?
Yes, participants must be at least 18 years of age.

Can we bring food into the space?
Yes, food is allowed within reason, and you must clean up your mess to respect others who may use the space during and after you.

Can I bring my pet?
To respect others in the space, no pets will be allowed.

What resources are available at NuSpark to help me with my project?
Current facility resources include tables, chairs, whiteboards and a large screen for projecting.  Programming resources include required sessions using the Business Model Canvas to help teams work through the process of realizing their goal of building a new venture.  Programming also includes workshops and a monthly entrepreneurial meet-up open to anyone. Check the events calendar page to see what is happening this week.