The Foundry is an adaptive reuse project to build a self-sustaining center for creativity and collaboration for the Cambridge community.

The Foundry is an adaptive reuse project to build a self-sustaining center for creativity and collaboration for the Cambridge community. At the intersection of the Kendall Square Innovation District and the East Cambridge neighborhood, the Foundry building provides space and programs for the visual and performing arts, entrepreneurship, technology, and workforce education within its historic, industrial setting. The Foundry facilitates access for residents, especially underrepresented communities and adjacent neighborhoods, to the dynamic working and learning environment of Kendall Square.


The Foundry Vision and Objectives have been informed by years of community input which strive to cover the broad range of possible uses that may be undertaken at the Foundry building throughout the life of the Project. First written into the Demonstration Plan in 2015, this overarching vision and the objectives that follow still guide the project today:

The Foundry will be a creative, innovative center that offers a collaborative environment with a mix of cultural, educational, manufacturing, and commercial uses. The renovated multipurpose building will be designed for flexibility and will be accessible, inclusive, and welcoming to the public. The activities within will be multi-generational and multicultural, providing a citywide and neighborhood resource that is financially sustainable for years to come.


Innovative Programs

  • Foster a center of creativity and innovation through the shared use of space populated with complementary uses that is accessible to all.

  • Create mentorship, internship, apprenticeship, workforce training, and educational programs for Cambridge residents that can directly benefit and engage the surrounding community.

  • Include significant training opportunities in the areas of science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) fields that can effectively introduce and prepare Cambridge residents for the existing and growing professional fields that have emerged in Kendall Square area over the past several years.

  • Capitalize on the commercial success of Kendall Square’s redevelopment to create a unique collaborative environment as a citywide resource, with a diverse mix of cultural, educational, and commercial uses emphasizing youth and senior engagement, with a particular focus on under-represented, lower income households.

Building and Site Development

  • Create physical assets (a renovated structure, new facilities, and equipment) that will support viable economic activity and promote business growth and job creation within the Foundry in a manner that can be sustained in the years to come.

  • Bring The Foundry into productive use for the community with universal accessibility and prevent the Property from falling into disrepair.

  • Highlight the historic architectural elements of the building and connect the building to its site and surroundings, including its new streetscape.

Operational and Financial Structure

  • Leverage multiple funding sources to providing a financially sustainable building operation, while providing space for community, cultural, and educational functions at rents commensurate with those uses.

  • Maximize the extent of public and/or community uses of the building and provide a structure for ongoing management and oversight of those uses.

  • Pilot and report techniques for the adaptive reuse of an industrial building into a center of innovation and creativity, utilizing public private partnership both as a financing tool and a model of collaborative economic and cultural development.