The Foundry

Mission: The Foundry is an adaptive reuse project to build a self-sustaining center for creativity and collaboration for the Cambridge community. At the intersection of the Kendall Square Innovation District and the East Cambridge neighborhood, the Foundry building will provide space and programs for the visual and performing arts, entrepreneurship, technology, and workforce education within its historic, industrial setting. The Foundry will facilitate access for residents, especially underrepresented communities and adjacent neighborhoods, to the dynamic working and learning environment of Kendall Square

What's New

The Designer RFQ (Request for Qualifications) submissions have been received. The Operator RFP (Request for Proposals) will be posted in January of 2018.

Document Library

The arrow indicates the Foundry Building - Image circa 1910

The arrow indicates the Foundry Building - Image circa 1910

The Foundry Building circa 2017

The Foundry Building circa 2017

The Foundry, a brick and timber frame industrial building, built in 1890, will be repurposed into a creative, innovative and collaborative multipurpose center. When completed, it will provide public community space and programming for the arts, entrepreneurship and technology and workforce education. Once redeveloped, the building with be a self-sustaining operation, supported by rents from leased spaces.

The building will be accessible and inclusive to all Cambridge residents, and be a citywide and neighborhood resource serving the multigenerational and multicultural public. Its location on the border of Kendall Square and East Cambridge provides an ideal opportunity to help connect residents to some of the world's most visible companies in life sciences and technology and innovation.

The redevelopment of the Foundry is a collaborative project between the City of Cambridge and the CRA. The vision and programming for the Foundry has been informed through numerous community and stakeholder meetings and workshops, public hearings and oversight provided by the Foundry Advisory Committee (FAC).

The Foundry as a Taxi Barn circa mid-1900's

The Foundry as a Taxi Barn circa mid-1900's

The History of the Foundry Building

The original building at 101 Rogers Street is masonry exterior over a heavy timber frame structure. The main building was built in 1890 with side wings added in 1910.  At that time the building was used as a foundry, all on one floor, at ground level.  L.H. Gager of Palmer, Massachusetts, designed the original structure with an unusual truss system that accommodated large cranes to support iron production.  This truss system had reinforced double wood trusses that rise up within the clerestory to support the beams on which the crane ran. 

The Foundry processed up to 50 tons of iron per day. The Foundry was originally part of a larger industrial complex for the Blake & Knowles Steam Pump Company.  The complex, including the Foundry, was once a nationally recognized manufacturing facility and supplied 90% of pump supplies to the U.S. Navy in the 1930s.  In the 1960s and 1970s, the building was used as a taxi barn.


The Foundry Post Interior Demolition

The Foundry Post Interior Demolition

To deliver a high quality community space that achieves the vision, the City of Cambridge (City) and the Cambridge Redevelopment Authority (CRA) have agreed to undertake the rehabilitation of the Foundry Building as a publicly funded capital project.  The building is intended to be self-sustaining operationally, supported through rents paid by the building’s tenants.  It is estimated that this strategy allows for sixty percent (60%) of the building’s programmatic space to be reserved for dedicated community uses. 


The building will be repurposed with an array of flexible spaces that can accommodate anchor organizations, artists and community uses, as well as host shorter-term events and activities in shared spaces. Over time, the building’s uses may adapt to meet evolving community demand. The City and the CRA are working together to establish a design and construction plan that will be suitable for a wide range of activities. The design will reflect the building's industrial past, with high quality, big-volume spaces that will be durable, adaptable and accessible. 


The CRA will select a program management team (Operator) through a competitive process to operate and program the community space. The Operator will recruit non-profit tenants, visual and performance artists, educational program providers, and community events organizers to activate the building consistent with the Foundry’s mission.  The CRA and the City will utilize the FAC to assist in crafting the programmatic scope of the community spaces, which will inform the selection of the Operator.  The CRA and the FAC will remain active stewards of the building to assure the operations remain faithful to the mission and to adjust the management goals over time to reflect evolving community needs and interests.

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  • City Council Hearing

September 25, 2017

Sullivan Chamber - City Hall

Amended Demonstration Plan

  • CRA Board Meeting

September 13, 2017

Cambridge Police Department, 125 Sixth Street, Cambridge

Board Packet

  • Cambridge Council Subcommittee: Neighborhood & Long Term Planning, Public Facilities, Arts & Celebrations Committee

          July 26, 2017 5:30 PM - 7:30 PM

School Committee Room/Henrietta Attles Room, 459 Broadway, Cambridge Rindge & Latin School

Meeting Presentation

  • CRA Board Meeting

          July 19, 2017 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Cambridge Police Department, 125 Sixth Street, Cambridge

Board Packet

  • Foundry Advisory Committee Meeting

          July 12, 2017 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM, Police Station, 125 Sixth Street, Cambridge

          Charles Sullivan, Ex. Director Cambridge Historical Commission Presentation

  • CRA Board Meeting

          June 21, 2017 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM

Cambridge Police Department, 125 Sixth Street, Cambridge

          Board Packet

  • Community Meeting

May 30, 2017, 6:30 to 8:30 PM, 

Dante Alighieri Center at 41 Hampshire Street

Meeting Flyer5.30.17 Presentation


Members of the Foundry Advisory Committee represent a range of backgrounds and perspectives including arts, theater, science, nonprofit operation, real estate development, and law.  They also bring relevant skills and experience that are important at this stage in the redevelopment of the building. The City Manager has appointed the following members:



All inquiries concerning the Foundry may be addressed to:

                  Thomas Evans, Executive Director, 

                  Cambridge Redevelopment Authority

                  255 Main Street, 4th floor, Cambridge, MA 02142

                  Phone:  617-492-6800       Email: foundry@cambridgeredevelopment.org




To stay engaged in the Foundry redevelopment process visit our coUrbanize page. Materials and information on the previous Foundry redevelopment effort can be found on the archived page below.