Can startups thrive outside of the city? Entrepreneurs sound off

A 1987 aerial view of South Boston’s Fort Point Channel area.
A 1987 aerial view of South Boston’s Fort Point Channel area.
David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

With the blooming Innovation District and start-ups flooding Kendall Square’s packed incubators, is it even possible to build a business in the city, with all the connections, services, and energy that comes with it? Absolutely: Head out a few miles, and prices drop precipitously, employees don’t have to mortgage their homes to park cars, and a number of companies have found ideal circumstances for starting and growing their companies.

In this edition of The Exchange, two entrepreneurs share why they founded where they did, and why they wouldn’t have it any other way. What about you? Did you find a perfect suite in Waltham, or are you sharing a room at an incubator with your 50 best friends? We’d love to see where you work and hear why you work there: E-mail us at

And now, The Exchange:

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David Patrick, chief executive of Apperian, writes that the thought of the suburbs makes his employees anxious, and a hot downtown location is essential.

Peter Blacklow, president of WorldWinner and executive vice president of GSN, says city living might offer a thrill but the commute gets old quickly, and suburbs offer distinct recruiting advantages of their own.