Detroit design nonprofit awards $50,000 for small businesses to adapt during COVID-19

A bakery, a restaurant and a coworking space in Detroit are sharing $50,000 in grants from Design Core Detroit to adapt their businesses.

Avalon International Breads, SpaceLab Detroit and Folk Detroit won the Commerce Design Refresh Grants, another source of capital for entrepreneurs facing a difficult climate amid the coronavirus pandemic with the threat of illness and challenges such as social distancing protocols.

Design Core Detroit at the College for Creative Studies has programs and services for design-focused businesses. This particular COVID-19-response award was open to those who applied the last two years for the nonprofit’s Commerce Design awards, which were canceled for 2020 due to the pandemic, according to a news release.

The winners can use the funding to hire designers so they can adjust their spaces to make them safer and more advantageous during a time in which, for example, restaurants can no longer pack patrons into small spaces to optimize profits.

Avalon was awarded $20,000 for a project with designer Marissa Gaggino of Heritage Co. II Architectural Artifacts. SpaceLab got $10,000 with designer Saundra Little and Folk got $20,000 with END Studios. The award funding comes fromĀ Bank of America.

Karen Burton, SpaceLab co-founder and CEO, plans to use the money to convert SpaceLab’s 300-square-foot design library into a more technology-friendly space. The coworking studio with a focus on building and design attracts architects, real estate developers, contractors and others. Because many of them are now looking for resources on building materials online instead of in paper-filled binders, SpaceLab will be doing away with much of the printed information it has on display and instead offer computers and access to architecture software not everyone has access to at home. Burton also expects to add a podcast studio.

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Source: Detroit design nonprofit awards $50,000 for small businesses to adapt during COVID-19

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