Boston and Baltimore have created cool places to learn and practice engineering and craft skills.
At Technical.ly (better cites through technology), Andrew Zaleski describes how the Baltimore Foundery [sic], “a campus for makers,” was inspired by Artisan’s Space in the Boston area.
“It was by chance that Andrew Stroup and Corey Fleischer, two [Baltimore] locals-turned-contestants on a new engineering-focused Discovery Channel TV show, met Jason Hardebeck, the executive director of gb.tc.
“But despite having only met earlier this year, the three had more in common than they knew: each thought it was high time Baltimore city had its own makerspace — a large, indoor area replete with machine tools, digital tools like 3D printers and equipment for woodworking and metalworking — on par with similar spaces in other cities in the U.S.
“Through their time on the show, Stroup and Fleischer met Gui Cavalcanti, who started the Artisan’s Asylum makerspace in Boston, a sprawling, 40,000-square-foot complex where members renting space brew their own beer, construct their own bikes and sculpt pieces of art from metal. After spending a weekend there in mid-January, the two were convinced they needed to find a place within Baltimore where any resident could do the same type of work.
“ ‘Baltimore has everything that we saw at Artisan’s Asylum: the level of artists, engineers, hobbyists,’ said Fleischer, 31, who received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from UMBC, and now works at Lockheed Martin in Middle River. ‘Baltimore has those people, and Baltimore does not have a space like that where everyone can go.’ …
“Whereas few people in Baltimore have the resources to become ‘coders and programmers,’ Hardebeck said, people ‘can understand how to become CNC machine operators.’
“In effect, that’s the grandest wish Hardebeck — a former product manager at DeWALT — harbors for the new makerspace: a place that can foster the next generation of blue-collar workers in Baltimore city by offering a community workshop so people can have access to good equipment and classes. In turn, people can become entrepreneurs building products in their own small-scale manufacturing facility, albeit one they share with other makers.”
Photo: Technical.lyFleischer leads a class in Introductory Welding last month.