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City of Seattle announces a $240,000 investment in Seattle’s cultural facilities

Funds will create new studio and cultural community spaces, update technology, and increase access to the arts citywide


SEATTLE, (Dec. 5, 2016) — The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture will invest $240,00 in 14 arts and cultural facilities across the city for capital improvements and renovations. The Cultural Facilities Fund is designed to support capital projects that improve Seattle’s arts spaces in significant and lasting ways. The fund’s goal is to help Seattle-based organizations build and improve their facilities in ways that will ultimately advance their missions and strengthen Seattle’s cultural scene.

cultural_facilities_blackbox2“To create an affordable and livable city, it is more important than ever that we preserve and strengthen Seattle’s arts and cultural landscape,” says Randy Engstrom, director, Office of Arts & Culture. “A thriving city needs space where artists and organizations can create and present their art.”

Fourteen organizations received funding ranging from $2,160 to $35,000, including:

  • SouthEast Effective Development (SEEDArts) is building Rainier Valley Radio (RVR), a new community-based FM radio station dedicated to programming by, for and about Southeast Seattle. Funds will be used to build and equip a professional studio which will serve as a digital communications hub for Southeast Seattle and beyond. The finished space will include a broadcast studio, community production space, classroom for training, offices for volunteers and staff, and an engineering room.
  • Freehold Theatre Lab Studio is creating a new home for the performing arts in the Freedman Building in Seattle’s Chinatown/International District. Funding will assist in the transformation of a 7,000 square-foot basement space into a Black Box Theater, two studios, offices, and a library.
  • Densho is improving the process of digitizing historical materials by replacing and upgrading failing and aging digital network wiring with high throughput (Gigabit) capacity wiring and network switches.

For a complete list of funded organizations, visit the Cultural Facilities web page at:

The Cultural Facilities Fund is part of the Office of Arts & Culture’s Cultural Space program. Through this program, the City of Seattle preserves, creates and activates its cultural square footage. To achieve this goal the Office works with artists and arts organizations to strengthen their role in charting the future of their creative spaces; works with developers and builders to incorporate arts and culture into new projects; and works with property owners to incentivize the preservation and expansion of arts and culture uses.

Photo credit: Freehold Theater, The “Awesome”, photo by Zoe Cauley.