Microsoft has been a part of the heart of Cambridge, Kendall Square, for more than five years – and we couldn’t be happier. As an area that fuels innovation with such a big start-up presence, the entrepreneurial connections made are leading to new ideas daily.
Which is why we can’t wait to participate in the integration of the 15-acre Volpe research center into Kendall. And as Scott Kirsner (@ScottKirsner) wrote in the Globe this weekend, the opportunity here is to use Volpe’s space to build on Kendall’s strengths and weaknesses. We know the strengths, listed above. The weaknesses: it’s an expensive place to live for those recently graduated young entrepreneurs with big ideas to live – as Kirsner says, “the twentysomethings who are starting companies and working for startups.”
The same idea was brought up by Harvard @InnovationLab‘s @HackerChick and creator of @Hack_Boston, Abby Fichtner. Time and time again, a big problem in Boston is talented graduates immediately moving to other cities. Affordable housing would keep them here. “One model we could look to is Krash, a network of shared living spaces in Boston, New York, Chicago, and Washington. Krash offers shared housing for young entrepreneurs while immersing them in a culture of innovation and connecting them with the Greater Boston startup community,” Fichtner suggests.
This would make her “innovation-themed community center” plausible, and create the type of young community building off shared ideas that is needed to catalyze innovation.
These are some of our favorite ideas for the space. What would you like to see on the Volpe parcel?
Like this article? Check out Annmarie Levins (@annmarielevins)’s post “Bridging Tradition, Technology and City Boundaries: A Call to Boston and Cambridge’s New Leaders.”