A Way to Provide Affordable Living and Work Spaces for Local Artists

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

The EMF building in Cambridge, Massachussetts announced the conversion of the arts spaces in the building to office spaces, evicting dozens of local artists. The EMF building was a prominent hub for creative makers, and this conversion is threatening to displace artists. Cambridge City council "voted Monday to have the Economic Development and University Relations Committee consider drafting an ordinance to create an Arts Overlay District. The district would aim to help create affordable live and work spaces, including studios, galleries and performances space, as well as create new venues for the public consumption of art."

Not be confused with the Arts and Culture District in Central Square, designated by the Mass Cultural Council, the proposed Arts Overlay District will create a specific arts zone that will incentivize arts development and create "deed restrictions, or limitations on rent increases" so that the community can accomadate the loss of the EMF building and can attract "not just more artists space, but more affordable artist space" in hopes of protecting their arts community.