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Commonwealth Places Campaign Launched for Fresh Paint Springfield

$50,000 goal to win matching grant through MassDevelopmentā€™s Commonwealth Places

April 1, 2019


Kelsey Schiller, MassDevelopment, 617-330-2011 & 617-694-9695 (cell)

Jonathan Berk, Patronicity, 617-750-6008

Britt Ruhe, Fresh Paint Springfield, 413-230-8146

MassDevelopment and the civic crowdfunding platform Patronicity have launched a new Commonwealth Places campaign with the Springfield Cultural Partnership and Fresh Paint Springfield, an organization that will host a weeklong mural festival in downtown Springfield. From June 2 –10, a group of nationally recognized mural artists will paint large-scale murals on exterior walls of 10 downtown buildings while local artists paint public pianos and decorate sidewalks using chalk art. Throughout the week, Fresh Paint Springfield will organize community events encouraging residents and visitors to meet the artists and participate in the creation of the artwork.

“MassDevelopment has been working closely with local partners to accelerate the revitalization taking place in downtown Springfield,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Lauren Liss. “We look forward to supporting the launch of Fresh Paint Springfield, another exciting community-led approach to beautify the neighborhood, engage residents and visitors, and increase foot traffic at local establishments.”

If the campaign reaches its crowdfunding goal of $50,000 by May 1 at midnight, the project will win a matching grant with funds from MassDevelopment’s Commonwealth Places program. Learn more and donate to Fresh Paint Springfield at

“The Office of the Mayor and the City of Springfield are committed to the success of Fresh Paint Springfield 2019,” said Springfield Mayor Dominic Sarno. “Fresh Paint Springfield strongly aligns with our goals of improving the walkability and attractiveness of our downtown business and cultural district.”

Commonwealth Places is a collaborative initiative from MassDevelopment and Patronicity that leverages public support for placemaking projects through crowdfunding and a matching grant from MassDevelopment. The program engages residents in the development of strategic projects in their towns and cities. In November 2018, MassDevelopment announced $500,000 in funding for the third year of the program, which has supported successful campaigns across the Commonwealth, from Northampton to Hyannis. Communities, nonprofits, and other entities can learn more about these successful projects, donate to ongoing campaigns, and apply at

In addition to being located within the Springfield Central Cultural District, several of the buildings designated for murals are also located within Springfield’s Transformative Development Initiative (TDI) District. TDI is a separate MassDevelopment program designed to accelerate economic growth within focused districts in Gateway Cities. The program works with cross-sector partnerships to engage community members in actionable planning, implement local economic development initiatives, and spur further public and private investment.

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2018, MassDevelopment financed or managed 384 projects generating investment of more than $4.1 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are estimated to create or support 10,994 jobs and build or rehabilitate 830 housing units.