News & Updates

Mayor Menino Breaks Ground on Boston Innovation Center

May 03, 2012

$5.5 million facility will be key home to the “collaboration economy”

The groundbreaking of the Boston Innovation Center is a huge milestone for the Innovation District on the South Boston waterfront.  The Boston Innovation Center is the City's first public space designed to support Boston's innovation economy.  The Center will play a crucial role in the social infrastructure of the growing Innovation District and will serve as a home base for entrepreneurs to meet, exchange ideas, and convene programs and events.  The Boston Innovation Center will complement the entrepreneurship ecosystem in the district that is already home to MassChallenge, the world’s largest accelerator program, Babson College, the country’s top school for entrepreneurship, and hundreds of innovative companies.
"This is a key piece of innovation infrastructure for Boston.  There are dozens of organizations in Boston looking to support entrepreneurs, hundreds of people interested in mentoring start-ups, and thousands of talented individuals looking to make their impact. This will be their gathering place.” - Mayor Menino


The Boston Innovation Center:

  • One-story, 12,000 SF
  • Including 9,000 SF of modular meeting and event space and 3,000 SF for a restaurant and test kitchen.
  • Featuring video studios, hi-tech conference rooms, and flexible meeting and gathering spaces.
  • Tim Rowe, founder of the Cambridge Innovation Center, will oversee the Center's daily operations and curate vibrant programming, including training and mentorship for entrepreneurs, networking and relationship building activities, spaces to test new concepts, and opportunities to showcase innovative businesses and ideas.
  • The development team includes Boston Global Investors and Morgan Stanley, contractor John Moriarty & Associates, and architect Hacin & Associates.
  • Anticipated to open in the fall and will employ up to 150 construction workers.  
  • The BRA will lease the facility for 5 years with the option to renew for another 5 years thereafter.
The Mayor also announced a related crowd-sourcing initiative called “Where Will You Gather?” – an effort to source an official name for the innovation center.  Members of the public are invited to suggest names at or to tweet them @IDGather.
“The Innovation District and Boston itself are giant invitations to start something new and to collaborate and change the world.  Our new innovation center will operate in that same spirit. We invite you to tell us:  When you dream and invent, when you learn and mentor, when you introduce and connect, when you test, and when you succeed, where will you gather?” -Mayor Menino
“Entrepreneurs thrive when they can connect, trade ideas, and share talent.  Mayor Menino and his partners at BGI/Morgan Stanley are making a huge investment collaboration-building with this project, and we know it will pay dividends for the region’s economy.” - Tim Rowe

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