S.T.E.A.M Garden Business Incubator Breaks Ground to Establish New Center for Innovation and Technology

June 27, 2018

New York State Homes and Community Renewal, Empire State Development, and the Central Avenue Business Improvement District broke ground on the S.T.E.A.M. Garden Business Incubator at 279 Central Avenue in Albany, the former St. Patrick’s Catholic School. The S.T.E.A.M Garden is a collaborative effort to turn the vacant school into an innovative living lab focusing on science, technology, engineering, art & design, and math education.

The nearly $1.8 million project was supported by $500,000 in New York Main Street funds from Homes and Community Renewal, a $350,000 Empire State Development capital grant at the recommendation of the Capital Region Economic Development Council and a National Grid Main Street Revitalization Program grant. The first work spaces are expected to open later this year. The S.T.E.A.M Garden was awarded a matching grant as part of the City of Albany’s Facade Improvement Program. Administered by Capitalize Albany Corporation, a program made possible by the Albany Community Development Agency and the City of Albany Capital Resource Corporation. The program provides matching grants to small businesses for exterior renovations.

The facility will provide affordable work spaces for startup entrepreneurs and small technology tenants, learning labs that offer workforce and entrepreneurial training sessions, and studio and gallery space. Programs will be targeted to high school aged individuals and up, with educational and training partnerships being planned through Hudson Valley Community College, the State University at Albany and Albany Law School. The S.T.E.A.M. Garden will enhance connections between Central Avenue’s commercial assets, residential neighborhoods and nearby educational institutions. It will serve as a focal point of the Midtown Grid stretch of Central Avenue, a multi-cultural district in the heart of Albany that is home to a performing arts studio, an array of ethnic shops and restaurants, and numerous live music venues.