Displacement threats to arts and cultural organizations are an increasingly urgent problem in cities and communities across the country. Fellow funders, city governments and nonprofits are searching for solutions to help protect our most valued arts and cultural assets.
Today, I’m proud to announce that the Kenneth Rainin Foundation has launched a new online resource to showcase an innovative solution that can help secure permanent, affordable spaces for arts nonprofits.
The journey for this solution began five years ago when it was clear the Bay Area was poised for another displacement crisis due to escalating rents. Fearing the loss of our vital organizations, the Rainin Foundation brought together community leaders, including our most progressive thinkers on creative finance and nonprofits to challenge the status quo. And we succeeded.
Together, we developed the Rainin Arts Real Estate Strategy, a groundbreaking solution that creatively uses existing financial tools and leverages public and private resources.
At the center of the model is a real estate holding company like the San Francisco-based Community Arts Stabilization Trust (CAST) that works with multiple partners to purchase real estate on behalf of arts organizations. This bold solution came just in time for two of our grantees that were facing displacement due to building sales.
Today, both of these arts organizations have secured below-market leases with an option to purchase their buildings and own permanent homes in San Francisco.
With momentum for this model building in the Bay Area, I’m excited about the potential for this replicable strategy to find similar success elsewhere.
I hope you are inspired to explore our new website to learn how the Rainin Arts Real Estate Strategy works, and how it can benefit your community.