Creative space Nova Labs plans to leave Reston with recent grants

Nova Labs’ Reston location (via Google Maps)

A nonprofit makerspace that supports local artists, craftmakers, and entrepreneurs is securing grants to support a move from Reston to Fairfax.

Nova Labs, which launched in 2011, is moving from its 18,000-square-foot space at 1916 Isaac Newton Square West to 3850 Jermantown Road this year, possibly by March.

It is in the midst of a capital campaign to fund the move and recently added an executive director position.

“We’re in a pivotal moment in the life of our organization,” Nova Labs Executive Director Derrick Washington said in a statement. “As we transition to Fairfax City, my hope is to expand our reach into untapped communities that could greatly benefit from our capabilities and culture to grow to the next level.”

The nonprofit acquired the roughly 40,000-square-foot property — a low-rise building with rooftop parking — on Oct. 25 for $4.4 million, according to a city property database.

The current space in Isaac Newton Square has classrooms and equipment for members to pursue projects that involve woodworking, laser cutting, metalworking, blacksmithing, sewing and embroidery, arts and crafts, 3D printing, computer numerical control, and jewelry making, its website notes.

For one of the nonprofit’s grants, Gov. Ralph Northam announced Dec. 20 that Nova Labs is one of 13 projects receiving Growth and Opportunity for Virginia grants. The $100,000 award will help it add new tools and equipment as well as support programs for member companies, according to the state.

“The project’s long-term goal is to double the number of entrepreneur members and double the Innovation Center’s prototyping capacity  in order to enhance [the region’s] start-up ecosystem, small business growth and technical workforce,” the governor’s office said.

The Community Foundation for Northern Virginia, which provides scholarships and philanthropic grants, announced on Dec. 21 that it’s awarding over $52,000 to the organization.

“Over the past decade, we’ve been fortunate enough to leverage our facilities and community of makers to support creativity, entrepreneurship, and innovation, as well as contribute to a number of projects benefitting both our local and global communities,” Washington said, noting the organization’s appreciation for the foundation’s continued support.

Photo via Google Maps

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