Westbury Arts receives new building through DRI grant funding
Art has found a home in Westbury. Last week, the Village of Westbury purchased a commercial building downtown to be used by Westbury Arts, allowing the nonprofit organization a place to expand its current offerings.
The building, purchased through funding provided by Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) grant funding from the state, will create a permanent home for Westbury Arts, allowing it to have a performance and meeting space, a gallery to exhibit artwork, and workspace for arts-education classes. The new home for Westbury Arts is located on Schenck Avenue, off of Post Avenue.
“This is a tremendous step forward in our long-stated goal of making Westbury one of Long Island’s most arts-centric communities,” said Mayor Peter Cavallaro on the purchase. “Westbury Arts has grown tremendously in just its first five years of existence, and we see the future of that organization, and the arts in general, as important for Westbury’s future growth and sustainability.”
The next steps in the project will be to hire design professionals to design the space to meet Westbury Arts’ needs and ideas, and then to hire a contractor to build the space out. Cavallaro notes that he hopes the building will be ready for a ribbon cutting by May 2019.
“The mission of Westbury Arts is to promote arts and culture in Westbury—and our vision is to make Westbury a premier destination for arts and culture on Long Island,” said Julie Lyon, president of Westbury Arts. “My board of directors and I are excited about the opportunities this building will bring to Westbury Arts and to the Westbury community. Support from the village is crucial to our endeavors and we are grateful for Mayor Cavallaro’s confidence in us. Having a home base will allow us to offer programs and activities that will better serve the community and enrich the lives of all Westbury residents.”
The village is continuing to make progress on other DRI projects, with County Executive Laura Curran visiting Westbury on Tuesday, Aug. 7, to receive an update on the redevelopment efforts. Cavallaro, along with board trustees and village staff, joined Curran on touring the village to explain what was planned and how county participation might be necessary to get projects off the ground. Among the other state-approved projects are downtown rezoning to promote transit-oriented development, facade upgrades, improvements at the Post and Union Avenue intersections, streetscape improvements, Community Center upgrades and rezoning to allow for open space in the Maple-Union corridor.