This impressive brick structure in Saint Paul’s historic Frogtown Neighborhood, built in 1917 as a clothing factory, was Artspace’s second live/work project. Created especially for artists with families, the Frogtown Family Lofts opened in 1992 with 36 apartments including 12 with two bedrooms and 24 with three. Residents share landscaped gardens, a children’s play area and a two-story art gallery known as the Atrium where tenants regularly exhibit their work.
Now known as 653 Artist Lofts, it resides in one of Saint Paul’s most diverse neighborhoods. The surrounding area has a large population of Hmong families that migrated from the mountainous regions of Laos and Cambodia. Hmong merchants run many of the local shops, and neighborhood markets offer fresh Asian vegetables.
Until 653 Artist Lofts opened in 1992, Frogtown was a neighborhood in decline. One of its worst eyesores was this old factory. The infusion of three dozen artists and their families — including more than 50 children — brought needed stability to the area and has inspired beautification projects and community gardens throughout the neighborhood.
Dovolis, Johnson & Ruggieri
Twin Cities Housing Development Corporation
AFL-CIO Housing Investment FundFamily Housing Fund of Minneapolis & Saint PaulMinnesota Housing Finance AgencyNational Equity FundSaint Paul Housing and Redevelopment AuthorityU.S. Bank
Bush FoundationF. R. Bigelow FoundationLocal Initiatives Support CorporationThe McKnight Foundation Northwest Area Foundation Saint Paul CompaniesSaint Paul Department of Planning and Economic DevelopmentThe Saint Paul Foundation
This former factory now houses 36 affordable live/work units (all two or three bedrooms) for artists and their families.
Artspace | 250 Third Avenue North, Suite 400 | Minneapolis, MN 55401 | 612.333.9012 ©2015 Artspace Projects, Inc.