Open Works featured in The Baltimore Business Journal

Excerpt from The Baltimore Business Journal, June 10, 2015:

$10M Open Works incubator for artists, makers slated for Station North

by Sarah Meehan

When Open Works makes its debut in the Station North Arts and Entertainment District next year, Will Holman hopes it will become just the kind of place where he can set up shop.

An architect by training and furniture maker, Holman is also the project director for Open Works, a $10 million incubator Baltimore Arts Realty Corp. is developing in a warehouse across from Greenmount Cemetery.

The 34,000-square-foot facility at 1400 Greenmount Ave. will soon house shared space and tools for artists, makers and manufacturers of all varieties. The building will incorporate 150 micro-studios available to rent on a monthly basis, as well as a wood shop, metal shop, digital fabrication shop, computer lab, microelectronics lab and textiles studio.

Holman and Baltimore Realty Arts Corp. (BARCO) Director Laurens “Mac” MacLure see Open Works as a place not only for makers to gather and work, but as a linchpin for workforce development in a neighborhood that needs opportunities for job training. In addition to providing space and tools for community members and small businesses to share, Open Works will also offer classes in each specialty.

“We see it as a platform for people to realize their dreams,” Holman said. “Teach a man to 3-D print, he might have a job in five or six years. Teach a man to weld and he might walk into a mechanic shop and have a job tomorrow.”

BARCO was founded in 2012 with a mission of creating safe affordable, sustainable spaces for artists. The nonprofit has a second project in the works — transforming the former Load of Fun building into Motor Works.

The organization purchased the future Open Works site in 2013 and plans to break ground on the project in September, with a target opening date in the fall of 2016. The warehouse, built in 1920, was previously home to a thrift store, whose profits supported a food bank in the basement. The space currently houses a quilting group for sexual assault survivors.

To read the whole article:

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