Artspace to study Tacoma's live/work loft potential

Representatives of a national non-profit arts developer will be in town next month to assess the feasibility of developing an artist live/work community in Tacoma.

According to City of Tacoma Arts Administrator Amy McBride, Artspace officials will be in Tacoma May 9 and May 10 to participate in tours, focus groups, and meetings. They were invited by the city and the Greater Tacoma Community Foundation. Their visit will be paid for by a grant from Chase Bank.

Artspace bills itself as America’s leading developer for the arts, with properties in more than 30 communities nationwide, including four in Washington State: Artspace Everett Lofts; Artspace Hiawatha Lofts; Tashiro Kaplan Artist Lofts/Tashiro Arts Building; and Artspace Mt. Baker Station Lofts.

“Artist live/work spaces can be catalytic,” said McBride. “Not only do they provide affordable housing opportunities for our creative class, they become centers for innovation and synergy often transforming neighborhoods and maintaining the heartbeat of community. We are excited to engage in this conversation to identify what is possible and move this dream closer to reality.”

A public meeting to learn more about Minneapolis, Minn.-based Artspace and the potential for live/work lofts and arts development will be held on Thurs., May 9 at 7 p.m. at the Tacoma Municipal Building, 738 St. Helens, in downtown Tacoma.