Why is New Bedford called a "gateway city?" One reason is that for generations, New Bedford steadily manufactured so many needed items for households around the nation. The hard working immigrants came here because good jobs were plentiful and a "gateway" to the American Dream.

Yet New Bedford itself is also a gateway from the days of its historic past the bright future of the 21st century, as the city is in the midst of revitalization centered around arts, rich local history, a diverse culture, a scenic waterfront and fishing port, and is at the center of New England's burgeoning offshore wind industry.

Kelsey Schiller, Director of Communications for MassDevelopment – who are lenders, developers and job creators, and who offer solutions that help grow the Commonwealth – said to keep an eye out on two downtown New Bedford projects.

The first is a tour this Friday of the large empty space adjacent to UMass Dartmouth's New Bedford College of Visual and Performing Arts.

Courtesy MassDevelopment

"New Bedford is home to a vibrant cross-section of living, commerce, arts and culture, educational institutions, nonprofits and more, and the parcel at 193-197 Union Street has a lot of potential to contribute to the neighborhood in a meaningful way," Schiller said.

The site tour on October 8 at 1 p.m. will show a unique development opportunity in the heart of New Bedford's downtown.

"We hope to welcome a diverse range of interested parties to learn more about the site and imagine new possibilities for its redevelopment," Schiller said.

To join the guided tour, RSVP to Jenifer Cohen at jcohen@massdevelopment.com.

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Schiller also mentioned the Discovery Economic Development Hub, a proposed state-of-the-art digital technology co-working space for people to cross-reference ideas and harness talents that can go unnoticed or underdeveloped due to the existing social and economic barriers.

The organization was awarded $50,000 today and will use the grant to build out the co-working space at the DeMello International Center downtown by lining up Zoom capabilities, 3D printers, a laser cutter, WiFi, teleconference capabilities, a recording studio and broadcast equipment.

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