A project to convert a former county police station in Silver Spring into an arts center with work studios and affordable housing is set to break ground in the fall.
A representative of Artspace, a nonprofit that has established dozens of affordable housing projects across the United States, said construction will probably take about 18 months. The arts campus at 801 Sligo Ave. will include 11 townhomes, 68 multifamily homes, 30 artist studios and community and commercial space.
The vision is to provide affordable living and working spaces to local artists and to strengthen partnerships among the region’s arts community, the Artspace website states.
The housing units will be priced for households earning between 30 percent and 60 percent of the area’s median income, according to the site. For a family of four, area median income is $110,300, according to the Montgomery County Department of Housing and Community Affairs.
Stacey Mickelson, who is a member of Artspace’s creative team, said the Minneapolis-based arts nonprofit already has campuses in Washington, D.C., and Mount Rainier. The group chose to establish an Artspace location in Silver Spring at the invitation of local officials, he said.
The campus will have about 57,000 square feet of residential space and more than 17,000 square feet of commercial space.
Artspace is working with Montgomery County’s housing department on the roughly $28 million project and is receiving community support from the East Silver Spring Citizens’ Association, according to a flier.
The former District 3 station was built in 1962 as Silver Spring’s first permanent police station. County police relocated to a new station at 1002 Milestone Drive in Silver Spring in May 2014.
Mickelson said the project team will preserve the entire station and convert the building into artist workspaces.
Plans for the Artspace center in Silver Spring. Credit: Artspace.
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