City Councillor Tito Jackson is pleased to announce that the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) designated Roxbury as a Massachusetts Cultural District on Thursday, May 18, 2017 in New Bedford, MA.

The district which includes Dudley Square and John Eliot Square, highlights the many arts and cultural assets in the neighborhood, as well as Roxbury’s significance as the heart of black culture for the region.

The process has involved multiple individuals and organizations, and dates back almost three decades. The current application was a continuation of those efforts and developed out of a public process. In August 2015, Haley House, Madison Park Development Corporation (MPDC), and The American City Coalition (TACC) partnered to complete the necessary groundwork that was needed. In December, 2017, $25,000 worth of funding from the Catalyst Fund was awarded to the initiative.

City Councillor Tito Jackson, who’s City Council District the new Cultural District lies within, was the lead sponsor of the Petition to the Commonwealth. The measure was co-sponsored by City Councilor Ayanna Pressley. Working closely with the Roxbury Cultural District Advisory, and holding a stirring community-based hearing on the matter, the Boston City Council unanimously approved the measure. The Massachusetts Cultural Council completed the final needed step by approving the District last Thursday. Councillor Jackson was honored to attend the MCC’s formal vote.


Councillor Jackson is extremely grateful for the hard work the entire community devoted to this initiative:

“The hard work done by so many in the Roxbury community has paid off: the dream of a Roxbury Cultural District is now a reality.

Roxbury is an amazing crossroads of the world’s peoples, and our rich, vibrant cultural life is now justly recognized.

I am proud to have partnered with a broad and diverse partnership of stakeholders of the Roxbury Cultural District Advisory Committee. I am also very honored to have partnered with my colleagues Councilor Ayanna Pressley (who co-sponsored the Petition) and Michelle Wu to shepherd this initiative successfully through the City Council and the Massachusetts Cultural Council.

Not only will this new State designation rightly acknowledges the wealth of cultural activity Roxbury already has. It will also stimulate the local economy by attracting visitors to the various cultural assets that already exist in this historic neighborhood.”

Additional information, including the application submitted to the Massachusetts Cultural Council and a map of the District, is available on the district’s website: roxburyculturaldistri