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Broadway Arts Center, SCI-Arc, and More Planning Big Changes With New Grant Money

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Four projects around the city of Los Angeles have pulled down a collected total of $1.5 million in grant funding from ArtPlace to help fund "creative placemaking" projects. The four LA projects include the Broadway Arts Center in the Historic Core, the "Hispanic Steps" and a new outdoor pavilion at SCI-Arc in the Arts District, the Mercado La Paloma in South Los Angeles, and The Hunger Cycle, a series of plays staged around LA by the Cornerstone Theater Company. According to the ArtPlace website, the organization (a collaboration of twelve of the nation's leading foundations, eight federal agencies, including the National Endowment for the Arts, and six financial institutions) received 2,200 letters of inquiry from organizations seeking a cut of the $15.4 million available for grants in this cycle, so it was good work by LA's creative community to win such a generous portion of the funding.

Here are more details about the four projects in LA that won grants:

-- $470,000 went to the Broadway Arts Center, a proposed mixed-use development containing a blackbox theater, an art gallery, creative commercial space, and affordable housing for artists in Downtown LA. According to a press release sent to the Curbed inbox today, "Thom Mayne and Morphosis Architects will link the Broadway Arts Center project with a potential Downtown campus for the California Institute of Arts (CalArts) and point the way for future arts-based developments within the Historic Broadway Corridor." The Broadway Arts Center released a preliminary feasibility study back in August of 2011, but the grant funding is expected to go a long way to making the project a reality.

-- The Southern California Institute of Architecture won $400,000 to plan, design, and construct two arts venues on its Art District campus. SCI-Arc will also plan a third venue in the community across from campus. From a SCI-Arc press release announcing their grant: "The first venue to be designed and built by the school is an indoor amphitheater, dubbed the 'Hispanic Steps'.' Located in the heart of the SCI-Arc building, the open space with rise-seating will be used for lectures, performances, symposia, film series and community meetings. The second venue is a multi-purpose 750-seat outdoor pavilion which will become the Arts District's largest public programming venue. It will provide a welcoming gathering place at the school's entrance and a much-needed sun-shelter in an urban area lacking in green space." The third venue will be a 99 seat theater in the One Santa Fe Arts Center, designed by Michael Maltzan for the site adjacent to SCI-Arc.

-- $290,000 went to the Esperanza Cultural Continuum project, as administered by the Esperanza Community Housing Corporation. According to the ArtPlace website, the ECC project will use the funding to transform Mercado La Paloma into "a place to explore and experience the indigenous cultures of the diverse residents of South Los Angeles with fixed media exhibits, film screenings, music performances, dance, workshops, cooking classes, tastings and lectures, creating a cultural focal point in this south Los Angeles neighborhood."

-- The Cornerstone Theater Company received $342,500 for The Hunger Cycle: "a series of plays developed with local communities that transform unusual spaces into theatrical venues while connecting community members with farmers and fresh local foods to stimulate new consumer chains."
· Creative Placemaking Initiatives Sweep the Nation; ArtPlace Announces $15.4 Million in Grants for 47 Projects Nationwide [ArtPlace]
· Broadway Arts Center to Keep Artists Living/Working in DTLA [Curbed LA]
· Arts District's One Santa Fe to Break Ground This Month [Curbed LA]

One Santa Fe

Santa Fe Ave. & First St., Los Angeles, CA 90013

SCI-Arc

960 East Third St., Los Angeles, California 90013