SOMO Artspace Lofts is a new residential building currently under development in Bentonville, Arkansas—a destination for the arts in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains. SOMO stands for "South of Momentary” as the project is directly south of the contemporary arts venue that opened in February 2020 as a satellite of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. The Momentary transformed a former Kraft Foods plant into a multi-disciplinary space for visual, performing and culinary arts that champions the role of contemporary art in everyday life. Centering artist housing in close proximity will cultivate a broad cultural network and artistic hub, further energized by resident-driven activities within SOMO Artspace Loft’s community room/exhibition space. Together, SOMO Artspace Lofts and The Momentary are part of the bedrock of Bentonville’s growing Cultural Character Area. The Museum of Native American History, Scott Family Amazeum, Walmart Museum, Haxton Road Studios, House of Songs, Brightwater Culinary School, and Bentonville Film Festival (established by Geena Davis) further define the artistry of the area.
SOMO Artspace Lofts also addresses the deep need for affordable housing as economic growth in Northwest Arkansas (NWA) continues to expand at extraordinary rates. All 50 live/work units will be affordable for residents earning 60% or below of the Area Median Income; with a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units available for artists and their families. The building is designed for energy efficiency and will include Energy Star appliances, LED light fixtures, and water-conserving fixtures; and will be built to an established green standard such as Energy Star Standard and 2014 Arkansas Energy Code. Planned unit amenities include open floorplans, large windows with window covers, ceiling fans, and walk-in closets in most units. Residents will also be able to enjoy easy access to the region’s exceptional bike trail systems, including the renowned, 36-mile-long Razorback Greenway that links Bentonville to Fayetteville, Johnson, Springdale, Lowell, and Rogers.