Arts & Culture Schools

Cultural Facilities Fund Helps North Bennet Street School Expand

The following news release announces the second $250,000 grant from MassDevelopment’s Cultural Facilities Fund to the North Bennet Street School:

MassDevelopment and the Massachusetts Cultural Council have provided a $250,000 Cultural Facilities Fund grant to North Bennet Street School (NBSS) in Boston’s North End. NBSS used grant funds to renovate a new facility on the Rose Kennedy Greenway and create a public gallery for lectures and exhibits. This grant was the second Cultural Facilities Fund contribution to support the new facility. The 2012 grant helped purchase the building. The completed project reunites the school’s programs under one roof and provides additional programming and exhibition space for contemporary craft.

“The fine tradecraft curriculum at NBSS connects contemporary Bostonians with the techniques and methods of the past, linking generations through craftsmanship,” MassDevelopment President and CEO Marty Jones. “These skills are a large part of the history and culture of the region, and we are pleased to provide this grant for their preservation.”

Established in 1881, North Bennet Street School trains students in traditional tradecraft while encouraging the preservation and appreciation of fine craftsmanship. These trades include bookbinding, cabinet and furniture making, carpentry, jewelry making and repair, locksmithing, piano technology, preservation carpentry, and violin making and repair. The school hosts public lectures, demonstrations, and exhibitions and features a retail outlet of finished work. NBSS is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. Students may enroll in the full-time programs, and short-term courses and workshops are offered to all age groups of the community.

”The Cultural Facilities Fund grant was instrumental in helping the school achieve its goal of a new home in the North End. We look forward to welcome everyone to explore the value of hand skills training and craft through our expanded public programs,” said Miguel Gómez-Ibáñez, President of North Bennet Street School.

MassDevelopment and the Massachusetts Cultural Council administer the Cultural Facilities Fund, an initiative of the Commonwealth to increase public and private investment in cultural facilities throughout the state. Created by the Massachusetts Legislature in 2006, the Fund offers capital, feasibility, technical assistance, and systems replacement grants for eligible nonprofits engaged in the arts, humanities, or interpretive sciences. The Fund has awarded more than $55 million in grants to cultural organizations across Massachusetts. For more information, visit the MassDevelopment and Massachusetts Cultural Council websites.

MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency, works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the Commonwealth. During FY2013, MassDevelopment financed or managed 350 projects generating investment of more than $2.4 billion in the Massachusetts economy. These projects are projected to create more than 7,000 jobs and build or rehabilitate 800 residential units.