State Announces $3.46 Million in Capital Grants for Arts, Culture, Heritage and Public Historic Sites
Providence, RI (STL.News) Governor Dan McKee, the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) and the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission (RIHPHC) jointly announced today the recipients of 24 State Cultural Facilities Grants and 18 State Preservation Grants. Together, the projects represent some $2.28 million from RISCA and more than $1.18 million from RIHPHC for capital preservation work at public and nonprofit arts and performance facilities, museums, cultural arts centers and historic sites throughout the state.
“Rhode Island is rich in history, arts, and culture, which play a significant role in our economy in every city and town,” said Governor McKee. “Through this funding, our state will continue to be a leader nationally in historic preservation, and arts and culture. On behalf of the State of Rhode Island, our congratulations to these organizations, and thank you to RISCA and RIHPHC for their work to improve the quality of life in our State.”
“Rhode Island is recognized nationally as a leader in historic preservation and the arts,” said Jeffrey Emidy, Interim Executive Director of the RIHPHC. “These state grants are investments that build on our strengths.”
“Rhode Islanders recognized the significance of these investments in their community and their importance to our state’s economy,” said Faye Zuckerman, RISCA’s Director of Communication. “Our museums, cultural arts centers and performance spaces, which are open to the public, will receive the capital improvements they badly need.”
In March 2021, Rhode Island voters passed the Cultural Arts and State Preservation Grants Programs ballot measure, which authorized the state to allocate $7 million in funding for arts, culture and historic facilities. Of the $7 million, $2 million was appropriated to RISCA for competitive grants while $1 million went to RIHPHC to fund grants for capital improvements to key historic facilities. Carryover funds from the 2014 $30 million ballot measure totaling $460,930 were included in the grants being distributed. Both programs require grantees to secure matching funds for their projects.
Some examples of the 42 projects include:
Teatro ECAS, Rhode Island’s only Spanish-language theatre, will renovate a new performance space in the Valley Arts District of Providence. $204,420. The City of Central Falls will complete critical structural repairs to Cogswell Tower, built in 1904, located in historic Jenks Park. $150,000.
Historic New England will replace the roof and gutter system of the circa 1796 barn at Watson Farm in Jamestown. The barn is a rare 18th century structure still in use for farm activities, and also provides space for programming and farm tours. $69,000.
The East Providence Historical Society will install storm windows and complete exterior repairs at the John Hunt House Museum and Education Center in Rumford. Built in 1751, the house contains local history exhibits, an education center, library and meeting space. $26,865.
Exeter-based Tomaquag Museum will build a new campus in a partnership with the University of Rhode Island. The new facility will increase the Museum’s capacity and visibility. $250,000.
The Artists’ Exchange, located in Cranston, will renovate its lower-level multipurpose room. This project will ensure code and safety compliance while expanding programming space. $40,000.