A slew of tech companies in different stages and sectors call the Boston neighborhood of Fort Point their home—from LogMeIn, the biggest tech employer in Fort Point, to early-stage companies like Lineage Labs. Meanwhile, WeWork has a co-working office on Melcher Street, and the technology foundry Blade (which houses Lineage Labs and two other startups currently) is also in Fort Point.
The boundaries of the Fort Point are, like any Boston neighborhood, somewhat fuzzy—but according to Google, it consists of the narrow slice of land running from Seaport Boulevard to West 2nd street, a few blocks on either side of the Fort Point Channel. It’s clear, though, that the area has earned its inclusion in the broad South Boston neighborhood that’s come to be known as the Innovation District.
This interactive map shows just how concentrated the tech presence is in the area:
An accelerating trend
When Bullhorn first moved to Fort Point in 2005, it was one of the first tech companies in the neighborhood, says co-founder and CEO Art Papas. A decade later, the neighborhood is packed with startups.
“It’s become an even bigger draw when recruiting talent,” he told me. “Boston’s next generation of technology giants will have grown up in Fort Point.”
A main reason why Bullhorn chose this area is that a significant percentage of employees take public transportation—and access to the Red, Orange and Silver lines, along with the commuter rail and buses, are all within a 10 minute walk. Employees and customers are also drawn to the character of the brick-and-bream buildings in this area.
Significant benefits—and potential
CoachUp founder Jordan Fliegel is another big advocate for the neighborhood. Before settling there, his company moved from MassChallenge to the Cambridge Innovation Center, back to MassChallenge, then to Intrepid Labs, then to Techstars and then MassChallenge (again). When it came time for CoachUp to settle into a spot of its own, Fliegel was having a tough time finding the right fit. He was eager to stay in Cambridge, but Kendall Square and Harvard Square were simply too expensive. Downtown Crossing and the Leather District seemed cool and up-and-coming, but some on his team felt it was still “too rugged.” The one neighborhood team members could agree on, though, was Fort Point: It was relatively affordable, on the Red Line and was starting to thrive. Like Papas, Fliegel told me that he was drawn to the aesthetic of the buildings in Fort Point, which he has attempted to accentuate in CoachUp’s own office.
But aside from his own reasons for moving CoachUp to Fort Point, Fliegel asserted that the flourishing of the neighborhood presents an immense opportunity for the Boston tech scene.
“I think Fort Point could actually save the city from this mass exodus of talented Boston entrepreneurs moving to New York City,” he said.
Here’s the full list of companies on our radar that are located in Fort Point:
|Bullhorn||Farnsworth||CRM software provider||Late|
|Careport Health||Summer||Health IT||Early|
|Cloud Technology Partners||Congress||IT||Late|
|Eze Software Group||Farnsworth||Investment tech||Late|
|General Assembly||Melcher||Tech skills training||—|
|Layer3 TV||A||Media tech||Early|
|OpenView Venture Partners||Congress||VC firm||—|
|Rue La La||Channel Center||E-commerce||Late|
|Session M||Summer||Marketing tech||Mid|
|Skyword||Thomson Place||Marketing tech||Late|
|Social Fulcrum||Melcher||Marketing tech||Early|
|The Welcoming Committee||Melcher||Consumer||Early|
|Zipcar||Thomson Place||Car sharing||Acquired|
Kyle Alspach contributed to this report. Photo by Joseph A., used under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0).