ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT NEWSLETTER
SEPTEMBER 2017
OFFICE OF THE CITY MANAGER
DEPARTMENT OF PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT
YOUR SUCCESS IS OUR BUSINESS!
Downtown Lowell Business Expansions

Congratulations to TreMonte Pizzeria, Sweet Lydia's, Fuse Bistro, Life Alive, and Lowell Gallery for your continuous success!  TreMonte Pizzeria recently announced the opening of their third location at the former Angela's Coal Fire Pizza in Tyngsboro.  TreMonte also has a location in Woburn.  Lowell Gallery recently purchased the Andover Gallery Frame Shop and Fuse Bistro announced plans to open a second location at 2 Power Rd. in Westford.

Sweet Lydia's downtown Lowell location has been successful and has been operating at  Boston Public Market for the past two years.  Life Alive has been operating in Lowell for over 10 years and has since opened two other very successful locations in Cambridge and Salem, MA. 

All of these businesses started in Lowell with financial assistance provided by the "Downtown Venture Fund Program" (DVF), a loan fund created back in 2000 by the City of Lowell in partnership with the Lowell Development & Financial Corporation (LDFC) and several other local banking institutions. The goal of the DVF is to attract high-quality retail and restaurants to Downtown. To date, this program has been a tremendous success, financing over 38 new businesses in Downtown resulting in the creation of over eighty (80) new jobs and a total investment of $4 million dollars. The total leveraged private investment is estimated at $2 million.  The DVF provides funding to "high-risk" ventures, most of them wouldn't be lendable through traditional lending programs.  The expansion of these businesses outside of Lowell  reflects on success of the Downtown Venture Fund and we hope to see other downtown businesses succeed and expand! For more information on the City's Downtown Venture Fund, click here.

Lowell Judicial Center Breaking Ground in Hamilton Canal Innovation District

It has been a long time coming but in a matter of a few short years, Lowell will be home to a brand new judicial center.

 

The new Lowell Judicial Center, sited on 3.3 acres in the Hamilton Canal Innovation District will provide state-of-the-art facilities for the Superior, District, Probate & Family, Juvenile, and Housing Courts for Middlesex County.  It will have seven floors and seventeen courtrooms and will replace a leased facility and two outdated state-owned courthouses.  Additionally, the building will provide new space for the Middlesex County Registry of Deeds, District Attorney, and a robust resource center for self-represented litigants. 

 

The courthouse will be extremely energy efficient while providing beautiful views of the Hamilton Canal.  The total cost of this project is $200 million and it's expected completion is Winter 2019. 

 

Bridge Street Business Owner Meeting

On Monday, September 11th, City Manager Kevin J. Murphy and his administration held a meeting at the East End Club for Bridge Street business owners.  The purpose of this meeting was to inform business owners on the City's investment to the neighborhood including: ongoing construction of streets and sidewalks, water line upgrades, parking, curb appeal, and the City's Sign and Fa├žade Program.  The meeting was well attended and we want to thank the East End Club for hosting this event.

Did You Know?
 
When you visit an independent Lowell business...
  • You keep more money in our local economy
  • You celebrate the uniqueness of Lowell
  • You support local jobs
  • You help the environment
  • You conserve your tax dollars
  • You invest in entrepreneurship
  • You make Lowell a destination

Thank you for shopping and dining in Lowell!



Economic Development Partners Spotlight:
EforAll

Lowell's economic success depends on strong partnerships.  The City of Lowell's Economic Development Office is fortunate to work with some great local and regional organizations.  Together we offer a wide variety of services and assistance to Lowell businesses.

                                                                Lianna Kushi
Executive Director, EforAll
 
Could you talk a bit about your organization and the resources it provides to local businesses?
We are a small business incubator that uses entrepreneurship to strengthen the economies of Lowell and Lawrence through our accelerator program. We run two accelerators per year, working with fifteen businesses at a time. They begin with an intensive twelve weeks of classes. Then each business receives three mentors who help them identify their customers and set goals as they move forward. Over eighty percent of the businesses we have launched since 2011 are still active today!
  What business sectors do you work most closely with?  
Over sixty percent are smaller businesses. Around twenty percent are scalable, high-growth businesses that will grow to be very large. Ten percent are social impact organizations - these are our 501(c)3 non-profits such as Mill City Grows and Katie's Closet.
At what stage of business do your services come into play?
We work with businesses in the idea stage and relatively new businesses. Many businesses we work with are facing a specific challenge they are trying to overcome, whether they cannot quite decide who their customer base will be, or they are not profiting yet.
Are there any trends you have been seeing in start-ups?
EforAll continues to see many technology-intensive ideas, along with consumer-driven service businesses like yoga and car detailing. We have been seeing many ethnic food businesses, which are awesome because they share culture with the community through food.
How does your organization partner with the Economic Development Office?
The Economic Development Office and EforAll really have aligning missions; both of us want to create economic development opportunities in Lowell by attracting and supporting businesses. We want Lowell to be a small business destination - a place full of thriving enterprises, creativity and diversity. Because of this we work together quite often, co-running mini pitch contests and accelerator events.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I love working with the entrepreneurs. They are so passionate and committed and I am continuously learning from them. Seeing them succeed is such rewarding work!
 
For more information about EforAll, please visit their website .

City of Lowell Launches New Program to Assist Lowell Entrepreneurs

The City of Lowell has officially launched the Lowell Entrepreneurship Assistance Program (LEAP ).  The main goal of this program is to provide financial and technical support to early stage start-ups and entrepreneurs.

For more information about LEAP, click here.


Introduction to Social Media Classes Available at MCC

Middlesex Community College's Social Media Certificate Program is designed to provide participants with a foundation and skill set in the new, evolving world of social media. The skills can be applied immediately in the workplace or to market a small business.  Classes start October 3rd!

For more information and how to register, click here.

Student Discounts

Schools are back in session and Downtown Lowell is once again filled with high school and college students.  If your business would like to offer student discounts, make sure students know about them.  Consider adding signage that welcomes students to your doors and promote sales on social media.  You can also  email the Economic Development Office and we'll help spread the word.
Upcoming Partner Events

Wednesday, September 13th - Identity Crisis: How to Define & Build Your Brand - sponsored by Enterprise Bank
Tuesday, October 3rd - Three Pillars of Sustainability

National Manufacturing Day 2017

This year, National Manufacturing Day is Friday, October 6th but Lowell's Economic Development Office will be celebrating all month!

If your business is interested in being part of National Manufacturing Day, please email the Economic Development Office.

 

Check out Like Lowell's calendar for many fun activities throughout the city.
Click here to read full Lowell Sun article

Do you have news, announcements, or need assistance regarding your business?  Please email Lowell's Economic Development Office and we are happy to assist!

 
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