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Donations & Grand Opening Event at Philadelphia Design Center

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There is a critical need within the arts community for accessible and affordable spaces to engage in creative activities. With this requirement in mind, and with donations from global design software developer Vectorworks, Inc. and a sponsorship from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Philadelphia-based nonprofit Partners for Sacred Places will officially launch the Philadelphia Design Center with a grand opening event on Thursday, March 31 from 4 p.m. until 7 p.m. Sponsored by Vectorworks, the celebration is free to attend, open to the general public and will include complimentary beer, wine, non-alcoholic beverages and hors d'oeuvres.

Located in close proximity to West Philly and Center City and within the James W. Queen Memorial Building at 1313 South 33rd Street in Philadelphia, PA, the new center will offer a co-working space for theatrical designers to create sets, lights, sound and costumes. In addition, architects, fashion designers and other creative professionals will benefit from the space. Making Homes for the Arts in Sacred Places (AiSP), a program of Partners for Sacred Places, spearheaded the work for the new center. AiSP fosters partnerships between arts groups that need space and houses of worship, active and non, that have plenty to spare.

"Supporting AiSP's mission to offer much-needed working space to the arts community was an easy decision for Vectorworks," said Alice Lowy, marketing director at Vectorworks. "By extending our most comprehensive set of design and 3D modeling tools to the widest range of designers, we're helping to foster the next generation of creative professionals so they can bring their visions to life. We're happy to contribute resources to help designers engage in activities that make this a reality."

With the grand opening of the Philadelphia Design Center, creative professionals can collaborate in person with fellow designers, while also having access to the latest technology, complimentary Wi-Fi and office equipment. The center will also offer a space to build costumes and textile-based props, thanks to the sewing machine tables, cutting tables, temporary storage space for in-progress work, a washer, a dryer and a dressing room.

Additionally, the center is equipped with a Vectorworks-sponsored computer lab that includes 10 Mac workstations complete with the Microsoft Office Suite and Vectorworks® Designer with Renderworks® software, a design solution that allows users to draft, model and present in a single, intuitive interface. People who utilize the center will also benefit from on-site training sessions that will empower them to explore the possibilities of transformative design in a 2D or 3D environment.

"Vectorworks understands the value of resources and spaces to the small and emerging designer," said Karen DiLossi, director of AiSP. "We're honored by their contribution to the Philadelphia Design Center and the undeniable impact to come for designers of all ages who receive not only a collaborative space to work, but also state-of-the-art tools and training."

Monthly membership to the Philadelphia Design Center ranges from $25-$150 and is based on hourly usage of the computer lab or the textile/costume shop. Sign up for a membership today by emailing info@phillydesigncenter.org, calling 215-567-3234, ext. 16 or by visiting www.phillydesigncenter.org.

RSVP by Friday, March 25 for the Philadelphia Design Center grand opening event on Thursday, March 31 from 4-7 p.m. by visiting the Eventbrite page.

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