Two Beverly businesses awarded collaborative workspace grants
January 13, 2020 : wickedlocal.com, by Jennie Oemig
BEVERLY — Two Beverly businesses are the recipients of grants from MassDevelopment, as part of the fourth round of the organization’s Collaborative Workspace Program.
The nonprofit Miranda’s Hearth received $12,910 in order to establish BevArt: The Beverly Arts Community Center, an artist incubator and community art center.
Last fall, Miranda’s Hearth founder Miranda Aisling submitted a proposal for BevArt to be created at the former Briscoe Middle School on Sohier Road in Beverly.
“This pivotal funding covers the cost of putting together our BevArt proposal and will also contribute to our current research into other possible sites,” Aisling shared. “Although the BevArt proposal was not ultimately chosen, the incredible support we received from across Essex County demonstrates the deep need and strong will to develop affordable creative and community spaces. We are already in conversations with another potential site and look forward to sharing information soon.”
The other grant, for $100,000, went to Gathr Work, a proposed co-working and event space to be located on the ground floor of a mixed-use building in downtown Beverly; the funding will be used to build out the facility.
According to a press release from MassDevelopment, nearly $1.9 million in grants was awarded to 31 organizations in order to strengthen community-based innovation and entrepreneurship in 22 communities.
“Massachusetts’ economy thrives when local entrepreneurs, creators, and small business owners have the space and resources they need to be successful,” said Gov. Charlie Baker. “The Collaborative Workspace Program represents an important tool for our Administration to foster innovation and drive job growth in the Commonwealth.”
Lt. Governor Karyn Polito joined MassDevelopment president and CEO Lauren Liss, grant recipients and others to announce the awards last week at WorcLab in Worcester.
“The Collaborative Workspaces Program provides the infrastructure for Massachusetts residents to grow their businesses, advance ideas, and connect to one another with an energy that drives our communities forward,” said Liss. “MassDevelopment is proud to administer this forward-thinking program on behalf of the Commonwealth, and we thank the Baker-Polito Administration, the legislature, and the Barr Foundation for their continued support.”
In June 2019, the Baker-Polito Administration and MassDevelopment announced the opening of the fourth round of program grants. Eligible organizations could apply for either seed grants to plan and study the feasibility of new collaborative workspaces, or fit-out grants to develop and expand existing workspaces.