DEARBORN — The City Hall Artspace Lofts will host its grand opening celebration from 4 to 7 p.m. Sept. 21. The ceremony will take place at the Lofts at 13615 Michigan Ave.
Among those scheduled to make remarks at the ceremony are Mayor John O’Reilly Jr.; Wayne County Executive Warren Evans; Stacy Esbrook, Michigan Economic Development Corp.; Margaret Morton, Ford Foundation; Arab American National Museum Director Devon Akmon; EmmaJean Woodyard, Dearborn Community Fund; Jeff Garrett, Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs; Artspace President Kelley Lindquist; and Artspace Senior VP of Property Development Heidi Zimmer.
Brief remarks are scheduled for 4:30 on the steps of the former City Hall building, followed by a reception with entertainment in City Hall Park. An outdoor stage will feature performances by City Hall Artspace Lofts residents and other local performers, with food provided by Park Place Catering.
From 5 to 7, resident artists will host Open Studios in the City Hall and Annex buildings.
“I’m so proud of our first project in Michigan,” Lindquist said. “We’re tremendously grateful to our partners, excited for the artists in Dearborn, and we look forward to celebrating the opening of this beautiful space with them.”
City Hall Artspace Lofts — which opened to its first residents in January — is a mixed-use, community arts campus, featuring 53 live-and-work units for low income artists and their families in two historic buildings – the former Dearborn City Hall and the West Annex.
“The transformation of our historic City Hall building into the Artspace Lofts is the culmination of our vision to bring a unique attraction to our east downtown to draw more residents, customers and visitors to our community,” O’Reilly said, “and to be an economic catalyst for additional inspired development in the area. Artspace was the right partner to achieve these goals, and the grand opening gives our whole city a chance to celebrate.”
The campus will also feature nearly 20,000 square feet of commercial space in the Concourse Building that connects the residential spaces. This space will become a center for creative entrepreneurship, and artistic and cultural collaboration. It will feature an artist-in-residence unit, a business incubator, work studios, corridor galleries, and office space for creative businesses.
In partnership with the city, the East Dearborn Downtown Development Authority, Wayne County, ACCESS Growth Center, Arab American National Museum and other local and regional organizations, Artspace Lofts will open creative and economic opportunities for the entire metropolitan Detroit region.
“Our involvement in the Artspace project represents Wayne County’s continuing support for the arts community and our commitment to creating, fostering and preserving affordable housing throughout the county,” Evans said. “Artspace will bring a group of creative minds into the Dearborn community that will add to the growth, imagination, innovation and creativity within that community.”
Lead philanthropic support was provided by the Ford Foundation, the Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs, the National Endowment for the Arts, and AK Steel.
Artspace, based in Minneapolis, is non-profit organization that uses the tools of real estate development to create affordable, appropriate places where artists can live and work. It develops these projects in ways that also support more stable, healthy communities anchored in existing assets. Because Artspace owns each of the projects it develops, it is able to ensure that they remain affordable and accessible to artists in perpetuity. Additional information is available at www.artspace.org.