The 950 Center for Arts & Education is an exciting plan to revitalize a historically challenged inner city neighborhood – San Francisco’s Tenderloin/mid-Market area – through arts, culture and community involvement. It is the creation of the Tenderloin Economic Development Project (TEDP) and the Tenderloin Arts Advisory, a consortium of neighborhood arts, youth and social service organizations. The 950 Center will feature permanently affordable new performing arts space, spaces for educational programming, and nonprofit office space. The Center will be part of a larger mixed-use facility located on the 950 block of Market Street, at first block of Turk Street, in downtown San Francisco. Other proposed components of the larger development include ground floor commercial space, new mixed-income housing and a boutique hotel. Combined with these other uses, the Center will be a transformative project at the gateway to San Francisco’s mid-Market arts and tech corridor. The 950 Center will:
- Transform this key location at the intersection of the city’s “Tenderloin” neighborhood, an ambitious new arts and theater district, and the revitalized Mid-Market area by creating a hub for the performing arts and a center of civic activity.
- Create permanently affordable performance facilities for outstanding emerging and established visual and performing arts organizations to better reach audiences and achieve long-term sustainability.
- Create permanently affordable space for landmark arts education organizations.
The Vision The 950 Center for Arts & Education was inspired by creative models throughout country that bring arts – music, dance, theater, multimedia and other disciplines – to people in exciting settings that actually help rebuild communities, improving the climate for local businesses and contributing to the revitalization of distressed neighborhoods. The importance of bridge building among divergent social groups is especially urgent as the 950 site is “ground zero” for the introduction of a thriving tech industry into a long-disenfranchised neighborhood with pockets of extreme poverty. As a multi-venue arts and education resource and destination, the 950 Center will highlight the diverse and rich arts of San Francisco while providing a community gathering place with a broad range of educational programs serving local youth and adults. The 950 Center for Arts & Education also embodies the idea that projects designed to revitalize neighborhoods are more effective when arts and cultural activities are fully integrated and part of a comprehensive strategy to create resilient, thriving and equitable communities. Designed specifically to support arts and education programs, the Center will secure the future of these services in the neighborhood as it changes and develops in coming years, by:
- providing quality program spaces for local organizations;
- supporting existing organizations and their programs;
- attracting new programs to the neighborhood;
- creating new jobs in retail, arts programming, and arts support;
- and fostering collaboration and partnerships that will strengthen and expand service to the community.
The Bay Area arts scene will also be strengthened by the 950 Center, as it will fill an important gap in the landscape of venues in San Francisco by supporting small and mid-size organizations. The Center will feature:
- a highly visible, centrally located venue extremely well served by public transportation;
- high-quality, flexible performance, rehearsal and support spaces designed specifically for smaller, cutting-edge arts organizations;
- providing cost-effective shared spaces, making participation in the Center affordable for more organizations as well as individual artists;
- curating programming to ensure a diverse series of programs;
- and creating a collaborative environment where organizations can support and learn from one another.
The 950 Center will bring together arts organizations, artists and education groups to work in partnership to effect positive community and local economic development.