MassDevelopment’s goal through TDI Creative Cities is to ensure Gateway Cities remain vibrant places to live, work, and visit by empowering and fostering connections between the cultural institutions, arts organizations, and creative entrepreneurs that call these communities home,” said MassDevelopment President and CEO Dan Rivera. “Following a successful two-year pilot in New Bedford, where TDI Creative Cities supported the city’s vision of becoming a destination for arts and culture, we’re excited to expand this intensive arts-focused initiative into Fitchburg, Lynn, and Springfield. We deeply appreciate the continued support of the Barr Foundation as we test and grow new approaches to economic growth across Massachusetts.”
MassDevelopment’s Transformative Development Initiative works with cross-sector partnerships in targeted commercial districts in Gateway Cities in order to engage community members, implement local economic development initiatives, and spur further public and private investment. Since 2015, MassDevelopment has invested $20 million in TDI districts through tools such as technical assistance, real estate investments, grant programs, and fellows who work in the districts. That investment has directly influenced over $100.2 million in public and private investments in the districts, and assisted an additional $219.9 million.
“Arts and the creative economy are powerful and essential contributors in building communities where everyone thrives,” said Barr Foundation Senior Program Officer for Arts & Creativity Giles Li. “We are excited to continue our partnership with MassDevelopment to accelerate economic growth and strengthen community bonds in Gateway Cities.”
In Lynn, the TDI Creative Cities program will be led by the City of Lynn’s Planning Department in partnership with Beyond Walls, Creative Collective, the Economic Development & Industrial Corporation Lynn, Essex County Community Foundation, Lynn Arts, Lynn Main Streets, Lynn Museum, Raw Art Works, and other community partners. The partnership will merge small business recovery with innovative arts, culture, and leadership development activities with a focus on amplifying Lynn’s traditionally underrepresented voices and promoting equitable economic development.