WAV Working Artists Ventura
The Working Artists Ventura (WAV) project is a $59 million, state-of-the-art community designed for artists and creative businesses completed in December 2009. The WAV community, in the heart of Ventura’s Downtown Cultural District, offers affordable living and working space for over a hundred artists of every kind – painters, sculptors, dancers, poets, musicians, filmmakers and more.
The artists bring to life a theater/gallery with performances, art openings and neighborhood gatherings. Arts-friendly small businesses including coffee houses, galleries, cafes, wine bars and jazz clubs will draw foot traffic and contribute to the vitality of the community.
With the community involved in every phase of development, the WAV project was created for diverse, mixed-income families and individuals. Supportive housing and crucial services are being provided to those at the lowest end of the income scale while market-rate condominiums with ocean views serve higher-income households and help to subsidize the affordable housing.
The first of its kind, the WAV project represents the vanguard of community development. The entire WAV community was designed and built to the highest standards of green building technology (LEED certified), including recycled building materials, car sharing, water and energy conservation, and renewable power from the sun.
The City of Ventura worked with PLACE (Projects Linking Art, Community & Environment, www.placeonline.us ), a nonprofit organization based in Minnesota. PLACE has developed this live/work project to provide permanently affordable housing for the Ventura community's growing population of artists.
PLACE has worked with the renowned architecture firms of CardeTen (www.cardeten.com) and Santos Prescott & Associates (www.santosprescott.com) to design this innovative project, with the active participation of the wider community and the local Conceptual Oversight Group, comprised of the following:
|Ed Moses||Housing Authority - City of San Buenaventura|
|Paul Lindhard||Artist with Art City|
|Ray DiGiulio||Former Mayor|
|Karen Flock||Affordable Housing|
|Mike Merewether||Insurance Executive|
|Rick Pearson||Project Understanding|
|Doug Halter||Chamber of Commerce|
|Betsy Chess||San Buenaventura Foundation|
|Sid White||City of Ventura|
|Elena Brokaw||City of Ventura|
|Kerry Adams Hapner||City of Ventura|
|Cheryl Heitmann||Community Colleges|
|Karyl Lynn Burns||Rubicon Theater|
Affordable Housing & Supportive Housing
The WAV project provides sixty-nine new units of affordable housing, all serving low income families and individuals from across the region. Because artists need high ceilings, plentiful light and open space, they and their families find it particularly difficult to live and work in traditional affordable housing. That is why WAV provides 54 affordable units especially designed and funded for the needs of artists with families.
Fifteen of the units are designed to provide permanent supportive housing, intended to house recently homeless families and individuals from across Ventura County. Rents will adjust on a sliding scale, creating opportunities for households of any income.
Project Understanding (www.projectunderstanding.org) , a Ventura-based nonprofit, is coordinating crucial services necessary to help these households break the cycle of severe poverty and homelessness. Supportive Housing is a national movement proving to be extremely effective. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services reports that almost 84 percent of homeless households were still housed after one year in supportive housing, and emergency room visits were dramatically reduced, thus saving health care costs.
A unique collaboration has also been developed with Casa Pacifica (www.casapacifica.org) of Camarillo to provide space and support for eighteen-year-olds matriculating from the foster-care and Casa Pacifica systems.
Providing construction management and owner’s representation on the WAV project is S. L. Leonard and Associates (www.slleonard.com), while Bernards Construction (www.bernards.com) will be the General Contractor on this project. Both Bernards and S. L. Leonard are national companies with extensive experience on projects in the Southern California region and were chosen for their ability to work with PLACE and the City of Ventura in ways that are innovative and that will result in an environmentally friendly structure.
Working Artists Ventura - Architectural Renderings
The renderings below represent the completed design. We met the challenge of creating a structure that will be simultaneously durable, green and affordable by using new building materials and cutting-edge architectural practices. Kalwall, one example of an innovative building material that will be used, will create translucent walls that give artists more natural light, and will allow light to escape the building at night, creating a subtle glowing effect like a Chinese lantern.
The building design received final approval from the City of Ventura Planning Commission in February 2007. Below is a map showing the location, at the corners of Thompson Blvd. and Ventura Ave. of the future building site. This location will serve as the linkage between historic Downtown and a revitalized Westside. The project broke ground in January 2008 and was completed on schedule in late Fall 2009.
Working Artists Ventura - News and Events
There are a number of ways for you to participate in the WAV community:
- Join in the online the discussion about the artist selection process at www.place.us.
- Attend the next WAV community meeting (see website for dates).
- Become a limited edition donor by purchasing one of 75 artist-designed ceramic tiles that will be permanently installed in a special ceremony in Fall 2009. Order form.
- There are many naming opportunities available to individuals and corporations; the following is a partial list:
WAV Naming Opportunities
|The WAV Community||$2,000,000|
|The Theater Gallery||$750,000|
|Supportive Housing Community||$250,000|
|Commercial Block Building||$250,000|
|Supportive Housing - Individual Unit Wing||$150,000|
|Supportive Housing - Family Unit Wing||$150,000|
|Central Block Building||$75,000|
|Community Services Bldg||$75,000|
|Western Block Building||$75,000|
|Theater Rooftop Deck||$50,000|
|Central Rooftop Deck||$50,000|
|Western Rooftop Deck||$50,000|
|Artist's Hot Room||$40,000|
|Bridges (5 total)||$25,000|
|Electric Car||$20,000 (each)|
|Public Art Pieces (multiple)||$15,000 (each)|
|Trees (multiple)||$10,000 (each)|
|Theater Seats||$2,500 (each)|
|Tiles/Founders' Wall||$1,000 - $15,000|