In five communities across Michigan, including Detroit, the Michigan Film & Digital Media Office (MFDMO) announced they’ve started a new “Creative Chambers” program.

A $400,000 grant allocated over three years from MFDMO will establish a formal partnership with the nonprofit Downtown Detroit Partnership for the Detroit branch called the “Creative Partnership for Detroit.”

The stated goal is to foster opportunities for those working in the creative industries, including jobs in creative technology, graphic design, communication, marketing, visual and performing arts along with culture-centered and heritage professions.

“A strong creative community and industry are essential for any city to be competitive and economically sustainable in today’s market,” said Eric Larson, CEO, Downtown Detroit Partnership in a statement.

Other selected pilot communities include Ann Arbor/Washtenaw County, Grand Rapids, Marquette and Traverse City. $1.5 million will be shared among the five regions as part of a tailored approach to attract and retain the talent driving Michigan’s creative economy.

According to the Michigan Bureau of Labor Statistics, the state’s creative economy employs nearly 90,000 people.

Many of those employed in the state’s creative industries are born after 1982 and working in film, audiovisual and broadcasting; design; creative technology; fashion, garment and textile; advertising; literary, publishing and print; architecture; music; art schools, artists and agents; performing arts; culture and heritage; and, visual arts and craft.

The grants are intended to help local communities develop strategies that can last  beyond the three-year funding period. They’re also looking to build the brand, “Michigan: State of Creativity,” as a means to cultivate a positive reputation for the region and state.

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