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Choose Framingham Newsletter June 30, 2018 - In This Issue:

Framingham Opens Skate Park
Framingham's new - and first - skate park hosted its grand opening on June 21st.  Framingham Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs held the ribbon-cutting ceremony on national Go Skateboarding Day. Festivities included a professional skateboarding demonstration and T-shirt giveaways along with a "skate jam" for riders of all ages.

"It's wonderful to see the Framingham Skate Park go from idea to reality," said Arthur Robert, director of Framingham's Community and Economic Development division. "The Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs division has done a great job overseeing this new community amenity."

The park was championed by Framingham resident Judy Grove, who felt that the community's skaters needed better options closer to home. According to park supporters, many of Framingham's 2000 skaters traveled to various skating facilities, some as far away as Waltham, just to ride. As a result of this advocacy, Town Meeting members established a Skate Park Advisory Committee to oversee the project in 2015; two years ago, they appropriated $500,000 to build the park.

Pillar Design Studios created the designs for the park and Artisan Skateparks, which has built more than 50 parks nationally, constructed the park at Farm Pond. The new park features grinding rails along with bowls and curved walls that were built out of the existing terrain at the pond.

The new skate park is located on Dudley Road across from the baseball diamond at Farm Pond. You can read more about the park at the Metrowest Daily News  and see a photo from the opening at Framingham Source .

Framingham Loves Coffee and Ice Cream
If you are looking for a coffee fix or ice cream treat - Framingham has options for you, and a lot of them. Lucky for residents and businesses alike, there is no shortage of coffee and ice cream shops around the city. On June 22nd, Choose Framingham took a tour of some of these great spots, and tried some coffee, tea, and ice cream. A full list of our tour can be found below. Be sure to check out the Choose Framingham Facebook page for pictures and details.
Downtown Framingham
165 Concord Street
Framingham, Massachusetts 01702
Downtown Framingham
181 Concord Street
Framingham, Massachusetts
680 Worcester Road
Framingham, Massachusetts
5 Edgell Road
Framingham, MA 01701
963 Worcester Road
Framingham, MA 01701
Saxonville Café and Roastery
Saxonville Mills
2 Watson Place
Framingham, MA 01701
Additionally, we know that wonderful ice cream and treats are available at:
60 Worcester Road
Framingham, MA 01702
1062 Edmands Road
Framingham, MA 01701
Don't take our word for it...get out and try some of these great places yourself. And, if you find yourself at one of these shops - post a picture and tag #ChooseFram!
Framingham Hosts Life Sciences Executives from All Over the World
Bus Tour for BIO Conference Participants Highlight the Benefits of Locating in Metrowest
Life Sciences Bus Tour participants at Alira Health, courtesy of Alira Health
On Friday, June 8th, 50 executives from life sciences companies boarded a bus in Boston and took the 30 minute ride to Framingham and Natick. The executives, who had attended the BIO International Conference that took place at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center (BCEC), stayed an extra day to check out the opportunities that the Metrowest region can offer their growing businesses.

The extensive visit allowed participants to get a sense of the region as a lower-cost, high quality alternative to the region's life sciences hub in Boston and Cambridge. After boarding a bus at the BCEC, the visitors - who came from countries that included Australia, India, and South Korea - learned first-hand of the relatively short distance between Framingham and Boston. After arriving at 1 Grant Street in Framingham, the location of Alira Health, a growing life sciences firm, participants were welcomed by State Senator Karen Spilka; Travis McCready, CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center; Paul Matthews of the 495 Metrowest Partnership; and representatives from Framingham's and Natick's governments.

Courtesy of Alira Health
"We were happy to join with local life sciences industry executives, as well as with the Town of Natick and the Metrowest Chamber of Commerce to help organize this visit and to host these life sciences executives in Framingham," said Arthur Robert, director of Framingham's Community and Economic Development division. "Framingham and the Metrowest region have a lot to offer these companies in terms of quality of life and an educated workforce, but with lower overhead costs. And they were able to see that for themselves with this visit."

The bus tour participants heard directly from the region's life sciences executives, who could help to answer their questions on the benefits of Metrowest. A panel discussion that included individuals from Alira Health, Sanofi Genzyme, Berg, Aleta BioTherapeutics, Boston Heart Diagnostics, and Virtech Bio were all on hand to describe their experiences and to highlight the emerging Metrowest Life Sciences Network that the sector is creating to help foster communication and a sense of community. The Metrowest Life Sciences Network organized the bus tour.

"We were really pleased to welcome these individuals from all over the world to the Metrowest region, and show them what communities like Framingham, Natick, and others in the area have to offer their growing businesses," said Gabriele Brambilla, the CEO of Alira Health and a leader within the Metrowest Life Sciences Network.

Participants enjoyed lunch at Springdale Barrel Room, a taproom that is part of the award-winning Jack's Abby Brewing Company's growing presence in Downtown Framingham. The group then visited Sanofi Genzyme's bio-manufacturing facility at the Framingham Tech Park. The group concluded the tour at ABI Lab, a life sciences incubator/bio-accelerator, in the Natick Business Park.

"Metrowest offers life sciences companies all of the benefits of Greater Boston's highly-skilled workforce at a lower cost and with a high quality of life. We were happy to host this delegation here at ABI Lab so that they could see that Metrowest makes sense for so many in our sector," said Gary Kaufman, a managing partner at ABI Lab in Natick, and a part of the Metrowest Life Sciences Network.

Tour participants told the Metrowest Daily News that they enjoyed their day in Framingham and Natick, and the experience gave them food for thought about their companies. "This is an absolutely amazing trip," said Srinivasan Parthiban, the CEO of Vingyani, an artificial intelligence company based in India, to the paper. That was echoed by Tae Gyu Lee, president of South Korea's Osong Medical Innovation Foundation, who told the Metrowest Daily News, "it was quite impressive." As the newspaper reported, "At least a few business people Friday said they would seriously consider setting up shop in the area."

You can also listen to Framingham's Arthur Robert describe the life sciences bus tour on a recent episode of the podcast OA on Air and read his tweets on the day of the trip.
New Signs Point in a New Direction for Saxonville Mills
If you haven't been to the  Saxonville Mills recently, you'll note a whole new look for the mill complex on your next visit. Saxonville Realty Trust, who owns and operates the Saxonville Mills, has recently installed new signage that will help visitors, workers, and residents navigate the sprawling historic mill campus.

"A mail man who wasn't the regular mail deliverer or other visitors unfamiliar with the complex could get lost here," said Emily Schlictman, Assistant Property Manager for Saxonville Realty Trust, in explaining why they pursued the signage project. The mill complex includes 10 buildings with a courtyard, and unlike when the mill was first built in the 19th century, most visitors drive cars to the buildings rather than arrive on foot. Those visitors were finding it difficult to make their way to the appropriate building.

The signs were designed by a Saxonville Mills tenant, Ever Designworks, and they integrate elements from vintage plans that were discovered in the basement of the mill recently. The signs, which include an antique font and the Saxonville Mills brand, include wayfinding signs, building numbers, dock numbers, the street address, and tenant portals signs. Framingham's Signarama printed the final product.

The total cost of the project was $30,000, of which $10,000 was paid for by a grant from the Economic Development and Industrial Corporation  (EDIC). "They were eager and excited to work with us," said Schlictman. "They are excited for the upgrades at Saxonville Mills." The signage will help the mill complex as it continues to host start ups, creative businesses, and act as an incubator for entrepreneurs throughout Metrowest.
Demolition Begins at Modera Framingham Site
Modera Framingham is coming to Waverly Street! Construction has begun for the transit-oriented development project in downtown, which will include a mix of studio apartments, 1-bedroom, 2-bedroom, and 3-bedroom apartments, 10 percent of which will be affordable housing units. The community will include amenities such as private outdoor balconies, a pool, a 24-hour fitness center, club rooms and a pair of courtyards.
Framingham EDIC


The Framingham Economic Development and Industrial Corporation (EDIC) was established in 1995 to stimulate economic development and expand employment opportunities in the Town of Framingham in accordance with the town's approved economic development plans.