Downtown Partnership of Baltimore, in partnership with MCB Real Estate, is excited to announce that applications are now open for small businesses to apply to the Downtown BOOST (Black Owned and Operated Storefront Tenancy) Harborplace Local Tenancy Program. Seven businesses will be selected to participate in the program, which includes $20,000-25,000 grants to open short-term retail locations in Harborplace, as well wrap-around business services including the cohort educational model, marketing and public relations support, and tenant build-out support.
Five suites within Harborplace’s “Baltimore Boutique” concept, and two Pratt Street fronting retail locations have been selected for this incubator-style program, which is seeking interested applicants from Black-owned local businesses intending to open in the coming four to six months.
“With two BOOST Cohorts selected, four businesses open and thriving Downtown, and six in the process of opening their doors soon, we know that BOOST is a catalyst for Baltimore’s most unique Black-owned retail businesses,” stated Shelonda Stokes, President of Downtown Partnership of Baltimore.
“This Incubator Program is a short-term solution that gives Black entrepreneurs a leg-up to experience real business operations and expand their customer base. We hope our newest iteration of BOOST efforts will support Baltimore believers, like MCB Real Estate, in unique ways for years to come.” — Shelonda Stokes
DPOB and MCB will host an open house at Harborplace on September 27 from 9-11 AM for business owners interested in touring the available spaces; a second open house will likely be added. Applications close October 6, winners will be notified the first week of November, and publicly announced the following week. An informational webinar via Zoom will take place on September 18. Application requirements for the BOOST Incubator Program, program FAQ, and details about the second open house open house can be found here.
“We have seen the success of the Downtown BOOST Program first-hand, and as we’re in the process of reimagining the shopping experience at Harborplace there is no better way to activate the space than to tap Downtown Partnership’s expertise for an incubator version of their proven BOOST Program,” stated David Bramble, Managing Partner and Co-founder of MCB Real Estate.
“Our goal is two-pronged: to support Black-owned businesses who call Baltimore home, and to activate the historic Harborplace while giving locals and tourists an authentic retail experience, representative of Baltimore City.” — David Bramble
Applications are now open for the 2023 Downtown BOOST Incubator Program at Harborplace; details, including the suites available for lease through this program, can be found at the link below.