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Real Estate Solutions

Our suite of services focus on securing property for long-term community control, through acquisition or long-term lease.

CounterPulse Groundbreaking, 2016.

Photo by Kegan Marling

We design and structure projects to provide our partners with flexibility and options for the future, including the potential for ownership.

More On SecurIng Space

To come to the table ready to engage with CAST, we recommend working closely with partners like Community Vision who offer financial management and real estate guidance to nonprofits and social enterprises to determine those essential needs, especially if you’re a newer organization that’s still figuring out its capacity.

Discover what it takes to be “real estate ready”



When you’ve laid that groundwork, see if CAST can help on your pathway to stability.


Pathway to Stability



Real Estate Readiness

What do I need to have in place to be ready to look for space?

Before we can get started, you need to have a solid grasp on your:

  1. Organizational Mission/Vision & Business Plan
  2. Staff & Board Capacity
  3. Financial Readiness
  4. Amount of square feet you need
  5. Ideal location
    >>Learn more with Community Vision

Facility planning & feasibility

How do I know if this space makes sense for my needs and my budget?

We can help you with a preliminary exploration to determine if your project is possible, like supporting you with:

  1. Assembling a team
  2. Developing a budget and schedule
  3. Securing financing/funding

Acquisition / Site Control

I’ve found a space that works, how do I lock it down?

We advise you through seller negotiations and the due diligence process to manage risk and get the most affordable deal.

Design & Permitting

The space might be perfect as is, but probably not. How do I customize the space for my intended use and do so legally?

We connect you to our network of design and construction professionals and internal resources to design a space that will meet your needs and priorities for programming and comply with all applicable building and zoning codes.

Build Out

How do I bring my design to life?

We manage the construction team, facilitate effective communication and decision-making, and stay closely engaged throughout the build out to keep the project on schedule and on budget. 

In Operation

You are open for business!

Programs are up and running and the space is fully in use.


Artists and cultural workers are anchored where they create.

Stability doesn’t always mean owning a building; it can also mean having a long-term affordable lease in a CAST-owned and operated building. Achieving stability allows you the space to dream!

How We Work

We primarily work with small to mid-sized nonprofits and individual artists or creative entrepreneurs

with a particular focus on organizations led by and/or serving communities of color who have endured systemic oppression and historical underinvestment, that have demonstrated positive impact in their communities.

We bring our experience, capacity, and relationships

to support our partners at the most opportune times for cost-effectiveness and project success.

We work to understand the priorities and needs of the artists or organizations

who request our support, assess what is needed financially and programmatically, and then develop a solution that fits where they’re at, organizationally.

Development Services

Project Management

From understanding community commitments and assisting with picking the right site, we usher you through concept, design, and construction with an eye on maintaining budget and schedule. Phases that we support include: getting entitlements, building out the project team, and managing pre-development, pre-construction, funding, budgeting, and financial analysis.

Construction Management

Working from organization/community-approved design, we provide guidance or management through build out including estimating, bidding, project launch, regular progress meetings, site visits, budget control, schedule control, risk mitigation, close out, and hand over.

Design Consultation

We work with you to reach a deep understanding of goals and community commitments. Through site visits, space planning, test fits, estimating, and consultant management, we advocate for you, your design needs, and community commitments throughout the design process.
CAST Senior Advisor Josh Simon and Black Cultural Zone CEO Carolyn Johnson share our plans for the Liberation Park development at a community in East Oakland.

If we aren’t the best solution, we’ll connect you with our network of consultants & resources to support your next steps.



Performing Arts Workshop Co-Executive Directors Van Nguyen-Stone and Lorena Landeros tour the CAST team around the new Geneva Powerhouse.

Once a project has achieved stability and your programs are up and running, the work shifts to stewarding space. Our developing services focus on operating and positioning the real estate asset for long-term sustainability.

More On Stewarding Space

Modeling New Ways

A Secure Future

By purchasing a property, generally done jointly by CAST and an arts partner, and taking it off the market, your facility costs are more predictable and stable. This gives you time to plan and raise funds for your future acquisition.



Money from the partner’s purchase then gets recycled into a brand new CAST project that keeps or adds another cultural asset in the community.

Partnership Spotlight

San Francisco / Tenderloin


CounterPulse, a staple in San Francisco’s art scene for over 30 years, has long been a catalyst for experimental and interdisciplinary dance and performance, providing space, support, and advocacy for artists. See how CAST helped CounterPulse buy their building and gain a permanent foothold in San Francisco’s Tenderloin.
Learn About CounterPulse

We’re building a new paradigm in real estate

A group of men and women in neon yellow vests and construction hats smile at a construction site amid scaffolding.
The CAST team tours the construction site for the California College for the Arts (CCA) campus expansion in San Francisco. (2024)

One where arts and culture has a permanent seat at the table with government, urban planners, and real estate developers.

This is a time for reimagination—to transform the real estate landscape in a way that centers the people who have been historically excluded from it.

For us, it’s not just about properties. It’s about cultivating partnerships and connecting communities.

See how we’re creating a new synergy between arts and real estate that puts artists in the driver’s seat.