The RiNo Art District just took a big step toward keeping artists in the neighborhood. The River North (RiNo) Business Improvement District (BID) voted this week to contribute $20,000 toward Artspace and their efforts to develop affordable artist housing in the RiNo Art District, bringing the BID’s total contribution to this effort to $40,000.
As a nonprofit real estate developer, Artspace is in predevelopment on an affordable mixed-use project in RiNo that will include live/work space for low income creatives and their families, commercial space for creative business and nonprofit tenants, a community gallery, and flexible program space at the development on Brighton Blvd and 43rd St.
“One of the biggest concerns we hear from artists is the cost of living and working in the neighborhood,” said RiNo Art District President, Jamie Licko. “We believe Artspace is a critical project that emphasizes attainable housing for creatives and addresses two of our key areas of focus for RiNo: Affordability and Retaining Neighborhood Character.”
The RiNo BID’s total predevelopment contribution of $40,000 has helped leverage more than $300,000 in additional funding from local sources, and demonstrates to the broader community that this is truly a neighborhood objective that fits squarely with RiNo’s overall strategy to address affordability and sustainability for the creative community.
“Artspace is thrilled that our first Denver project will create permanently affordable spaces for creatives and their families to live and work in the River North Art District,” said Shannon Joern, Vice-President of National Advancement with Artspace. “The partnership and support between Artspace, RiNo, the City and other local funders, has been tremendous and we are especially grateful to the RiNo district for its vision and leadership to support making this project a reality.”
The BID’s contribution will go toward Artspace’s work in predevelopment, advancing site analysis, design development, financing, and fundraising on the mixed-use concept that will be built new on property owned by Westfield Companies on RiNo’s west side.
This project would join with Artspace’s other 40 artist-centered projects across the country to further their mission to create and preserve affordable space for the creative sector. The RiNo BID has identified an urgent need and demand for safe and affordable creative space that such a development would address very directly in a changing market.
“We will continue to support, advocate for, and champion Artspace,” said Licko. “The BID supports projects which are finding creative ways to keep our neighborhood intact and reserve a place and space for everyone.”