Momentum Behind Hartford's Ambitious Parkville Arts & Innovation District

Once a hub for typewriters, bicycles, and automobiles, Hartford's Parkville neighborhood is about to undergo a major transformation. The city is seeking $50 million from the state to develop 12 properties in the heart of Parkville into what it's calling the Parkville Arts and Innovation District, the Hartford Courant reports.

The idea is to create innovation space to form startups while providing space for them to grow and create jobs at all skill levels, "advanced manufacturing, much like health care and insurance, is increasingly driven by digital technology," Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin says. "We want young people to see it."

One of the properties being developed is a 90,000-square-foot factory that once produced steel bicycle tubing. It was on the city's list of most troubled buildings, and was used for illegal dumping, developer Bob Hussain tells the Courant. But the city believes the property is the right fit for small and mid-size companies that want to expand.

Another property being developed is a 352-space parking garage on a parking lot near the corner of Bartholomew Avenue and Park Street.

The district would also include new housing and entertainment.

Stanley Black & Decker, which has helped lead the development effort, has contributed $5 million.
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REDF, a San Francisco-based nonprofit, will receive a $7 Million grant from the federal Social Innovation Fund program.




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