Cultural Alliance is one step closer to purchasing Hudson armory

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Cultural Alliance is one step closer to purchasing Hudson armory
Photo by/Laura Hayes
The former National Guard Training Center is located on Park Street.

By Laura Hayes, Contributing Writer

HUDSON — The Hudson Cultural Alliance just landed a major win in its journey to purchase the vacant Hudson Armory. 

That came in the form of a $200,000 matching grant. 

“That’s a big step for us,” said Alliance founder Tom Desmond during a May 17 Select Board Meeting. 

The Hudson Cultural Alliance wants to purchase the armory from the state and redevelop it as a performance arts venue.

On May 13, the Mass Cultural Council announced that the MassDevelopment Board of Directors approved $9.1 million in grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Facilities Fund.

The Hudson Cultural Alliance received one of 69 capital grants. The grant is a matching grant, which means that the Cultural Facilities Fund will match up to $200,000 in donations. 

“Thank you for doing this and going after these funds, so we don’t have to use taxpayer money,” said Select Board member Shawn Sadowski. “I appreciate that.” 

Last September, the Select Board gave the Alliance the green light to fundraise to purchase the building. 

The Alliance has sought to raise $230,000, though it may cost between $1 to 2 million to rehabilitate the armory once the Alliance owns it, group leaders have said. 

As of the Select Board meeting, Desmond estimated that the Alliance had received approximately $20,000 in pledges from local banks and businesses.

“It’s been a challenge in the COVID environment to fundraise, but we have a number of irons in the fire,” said Alliance President Andy Horvitz. 

Desmond said one of those irons was funding from the state budget. 

He said State Sen. Jamie Eldridge (D-Acton) has agreed to earmark funding on the senate side of the budget as that plan takes shape this year. This week, Eldridge announced that his amendment to the budget for $230,000 to fund the armory was approved.

Locally, Select Board member James Quinn said receiving this matching grant is encouraging to potential donors.

“Every dime that you give just doubles our own efforts. This kind of makes me want to open up my pocketbook a little bit. … This is a great thing going forward,” Quinn said.

Learn more about the armory project at https://hudsonarmoryproject.org.