A Place for the Arts in West Park?
At the end of August, 2011, KCDC convened a meeting of West Park arts enthusiasts, bent on finding a home for arts programming in the neighborhood. They sought a place big enough to host several different activities: lessons, shows, performances, group work, etc., that included sufficient parking in a central location. At the time, no such facility was available.
Fast forward to the present. St. Mark Episcopal Church on Triskett near Lorain Avenue closed late last fall and was eventually put up for sale by the Episcopal Diocese of Cleveland. The church has a large sanctuary, two large multi-purpose rooms, a kitchen, three offices, and a decent sized parking lot.
KCDC has signed a letter of intent to purchase the building. We are currently evaluating the building's condition, talking with partners who might rent the space at certain times, and looking at financing options.
While we're experienced at managing property, arts programming is not part of our repertoire. Fortunately, while there is a dearth of programming right in our neighborhood, there are exceptional arts organizations in the vicinity. We are seeking partners that already do arts programming to bring their expertise to us. If all goes as planned, we will have a fabulous space to offer and lots of people hungry to watch and learn.
An auxiliary use of the building will be to host celebrations and receptions. It is expected that at least 225 people could be seated comfortably in the main room. With its soaring ceiling and clerestory windows, it would be an attractive place to mark an occasion, unlike anything else in the neighborhood.
The facility will need some substantial work, including portions of the roof and the parking lot, before any events can take place there. If it is determined by our Board of Trustees to move forward with the project, it is expected to be ready to go this fall. Look for further details in the August issue of Kamm's Corners Magazine.