2014 has brought many positive changes to Springfield, and it is clear that Main Street is getting a makeover! Cities can turn around when people are moving in the same direction. Change happens when governments, civic groups, nonprofits, colleges, universities, hospitals and industries unite.
In a recent article published in The Republican, as well as in the slideshow released by MassLive, “Top 50 reasons why Springfield is on the rise”, a wide array of businesses, organizations, and individuals were showcased coming to together to create a better Springfield. TechSpring was listed as one of them! In addition to the much anticipated casino, other Main Street developments included New England Public Radio’s studio, The University of Massachusetts’ and Bay Path University’s offices moving downtown.
Nonprofits are also making over Main Street. Valley Venture Mentors (VVM), is expanding into new space on Main Street to accommodate their 30 companies that are in training. VVM is a nonprofit that offers both a mentorship program and an accelerator program for start-ups in the area. Also appearing on MassLive’s list and located on Main Street is the nonprofit, Tech Foundry. It launched this year and was developed to offer IT training early on to high school students in the community and develop the necessary skills employers are looking for.
Additionally, we have seen local businesses work to expand this makeover outward into the community, including the nearby Business Growth Center that is available to help start-up companies in the area, and even Main Street’s Back Street Bistro, which has committed to using fresh organic and locally grown food from the surrounding area. This is certainly an exciting time to be walking downtown for sure!