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Old 05-03-2009, 06:16 PM
 
Location: South Coast of Nebraska
252 posts, read 642,061 times
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I have a proposal for city refugees who have a creative edge. Throughout Nebraska, as well as other rural states, there are Main Streets that are still viable, but contain old, brick buildings for sale.

I eyeball the one that I own and think that the 2nd story would make a fantastic living space while the downstairs could be studio, gallery, or other work space.


If I could coordinate with a builder, I could put together a great living space that has access to the grocery store, the post office, the golf course, the city park, the cafe, the walking path, the movie theatre, the school and any entertainment that happens 'downtown.' The price would be right.

How hard would it be to revitalize these old buildings???And, why not? Is there any interest in this?

Now, I have to admit that I already have a country home and will probably not be the one that remodels this bldg. I'm just wondering if there are other people, out there, with a similar vision???????????
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Old 05-03-2009, 07:24 PM
 
Location: In a happy place
3,784 posts, read 7,040,129 times
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Similar vision???? Hamilton, Ohio - "City of Sculpture" is trying to work with ArtSpace to revitalize their downtown district. IMO, it would be a perfect mix, but there is some resistance from some of the residents.

Artspace USA - America's Leading Nonprofit Real Estate Developer for the Arts


(By the way, I don't live in Hamilton...yet.)
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Old 05-03-2009, 08:03 PM
 
Location: South Coast of Nebraska
252 posts, read 642,061 times
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Thanks, so much for the info. But, I notice that Artspace is mostly located in populated areas.

Is there any notion that people could or would use Main Street buildings in small, isolated towns like the ones in western Nebraska? Have people thought of that??
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Old 05-04-2009, 01:31 AM
 
Location: Somewhere out there
18,288 posts, read 20,808,084 times
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In Indiana the ones that own these brick downtown buildings don't want to sell them at reasonable prices for others to fix up. Downtowns could be brought back with arts, neighborhood food joints that offered sidewalk seating as well, home shops and even loft living. Too many old family ties to communities that have held control & money don't want to give way for "different" thinking.

So the buildings sit year after year empty deteriorating until a mayor or city council goes to court to seek it's demolish. Sad.
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Old 05-04-2009, 06:51 AM
 
4,259 posts, read 9,881,562 times
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Here's some folks who seem close to your idea: ARTSOilCity (http://www.artsoilcity.com/html/index.htm - broken link)
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Old 05-04-2009, 11:02 AM
 
Location: South Coast of Nebraska
252 posts, read 642,061 times
Reputation: 182
Quote:
Originally Posted by ki0eh View Post
Here's some folks who seem close to your idea: ARTSOilCity (http://www.artsoilcity.com/html/index.htm - broken link)
Thank you. This is helpful--lots of reading to do. The pics are inspirational.

I'm still way out in the middle of nowhere, so there are many questions.

I do agree that inflated ideas about price probably nips the market for this kind of creativity. Maybe that will be a niche for isolated towns.

I'm open to any ideas about this.
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Old 05-04-2009, 02:20 PM
 
Location: Niceville, FL
7,936 posts, read 16,458,388 times
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See also: Marfa, Texas
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Old 05-04-2009, 06:07 PM
 
Location: South Dakota
733 posts, read 4,243,891 times
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It's not a bad idea at all, generally. And, in many small prairie towns, 2 or 3 story mercantile structures do sit empty. The problem, however, is endemic to all small prairie towns - you need a market for your goods whether they are canned peas or paintings, sculptures, and jewelry. The art market in depressed rural areas ain't too hot - so gallery shows and markets tend to be distant. Some folks do quite well in rural America - but it takes travelling to larger population areas and lots of online exposure to get the works to the buyer.
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Old 05-04-2009, 09:17 PM
 
Location: In a happy place
3,784 posts, read 7,040,129 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windtimber View Post
The art market in depressed rural areas ain't too hot - so gallery shows and markets tend to be distant. Some folks do quite well in rural America - but it takes travelling to larger population areas and lots of online exposure to get the works to the buyer.
If you can do something to get the whole town on board and not just one or two buildings, and you are not a great distance from a well traveled highway, you can become an attraction/destination for people. There are a couple of small towns within a couple of hours from us that actually have tour busses show up on a regular basis. Good luck. I wish we could get something going in our town.
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Old 05-06-2009, 06:08 PM
 
Location: Eastern Washington
14,711 posts, read 45,808,859 times
Reputation: 13568
I heard something about ADA etc. forcing you to make them handicap-accessible, plus other code-updating issues, making it impractical to bring the old 2nd-story apartments back to use.

It is a waste, though, plenty of decent shelter that's not being used.
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