A home for the arts: New North Valley Arts Council space will be above downtown restaurant

Conceptual floor plans for the Arts Creation Center project being spearheaded by the North Valley Arts Council. The center would be located above Sanders 1907 in downtown Grand Forks. Photo credit: Hepper Olson Architects.

Things seem to be coming together for a new arts center proposed for downtown Grand Forks.

The North Valley Arts Council, the organization behind the push for the Arts Creation Center, received a $90,000 grant earlier this month from the North Dakota Department of Commerce’s tourism division.

Fundraising progress for the Arts Creation Center project as of December 2013. Photo credit: North Valley Arts Council.

The center would provide space for organizations to make, rehearse, perform and share art of all forms.

The grant joins another $75,000 grant awarded to the group last year. The NoVAC’s executive director, Marie Strinden, said several grant applications have been submitted to national and state organizations, and staff members are in the process of writing more.

The grants would pay for part of a $920,000 remodel of a second floor 6,000 square-foot space at 22 S. Third Street — above Sanders 1907 restaurant.

The remainder of the cost would be covered by private donations. You can continue reading the rest of the story here.

One thing I didn’t touch on in the Herald story was the center’s potential to generate revenue in Grand Forks by attracting more tourists to the city.

NoVAC notes in its press release that 80,000 people live in southern Manitoba and 70,000 people live in or near Grand Forks and East Grand Forks.

“There is a drop-off of cultural pulls to downtown Grand Forks during the winter months because of the inability to hold outdoor events,” the releases says.

The NoVAC staff hope the art center would serve as a remedy to this by being a venue for year-round attractions.

Overall project progress for the Arts Creation Center as of December 2013. Photo credit: North Valley Arts Council.

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