June 2016

Building Foundations, Bridges and Futures

The Arts + Creativity Center is coming to midtown Santa Fe


Sharna Langlais



Santa Fe has been designated a “UNESCO Creative City.” The Atlantic magazine considers Santa Fe the “Most Artistic City in America.” The Bureau of Business and Economic Research has reported that Santa Fe’s arts and creative industries contribute more than $1.1 billion annually to the local economy.


In 2005, when an economic-development study recommended a focus on “creative industries,” Creative Santa Fe (CrSF) was founded. Now an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, CrSF is “committed to strengthening the creative economy of the city by identifying key issues and opportunities, bringing community members together for dialogue and catalyzing ideas into action.”


CrSF is now poised for a whole new chapter of “innovation in action” through development of the Arts + Creativity Center. The midtown complex is intended to provide affordable live-work space for creatives. It will include more than 50 residential units and at least 10 market-rate units with flexible floor plans and high energy efficiency. Nested within a 1-acre park, the vision features community buildings and meeting spaces, micro-retail, outdoor mercado, small performance venues, plus a computer lab and grant-writing library.


On March 30, Santa Fe’s City Council voted to donate the 5-acre, Siler Road Public Works Yard for the Arts + Creativity Center. A planning process was launched in April. The timeline includes “Architectural Design and Outreach” through September 2016 and “Shared Resources and Programming Outreach” through April 2017. Construction will take place in the winter of 2017-2018, in time for a summer opening. 


With the high cost of housing and commercial spaces pushing the workforce and talented youth out of the city, CrSF is counting on this proven national model to attract and retain young people while helping revitalize a semi-industrial neighborhood.



Sharna Langlais, a certified Reiki Master, helps people and projects move through issues and obstacles. 619.952.7737, sharna@seeksparkshine.com, http://seeksparkshine.com


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