When you look around New Rochelle and see its history (and what's left of its history) and some of the regentrification that has already occurred, and you think about what the Mayor and City Council have done recently, in terms of creating a cabaret overlay zone in the downtown area, and then look at the many ideas that have been posted on the NRFuture crowdsourcing website, the culture that cries out is one of arts and entertainment. The arts can be fine and/or performing arts. New Rochelle already has many fine artists and performers. It has an established Arts Council and an Opera Company. They need venues to show their works and to perform. Entertainment can include major event space like a performing arts center and a concert hall as well as smaller spaces for jazz, dance, and comedy clubs, cabarets, live music lounge, and poetry readings. NR already has a Poets Corner and a few cabarets. NR has an empty theater downtown on Main St, near Maple, that can be upgraded and used for larger events. NR has Wildcliff on the Sound that can be upgraded and used for smaller events. The Veterans are more than willing to turn the Armory into a Performing Arts center. About 3 dozen people have (to date, 5/8/15) requested an amphitheater on the water. NR already has the bandshell in Hudson Park. The City can upgrade and expand it. Let's upgrade and repurpose the space that NR already has dedicated to live performances. NR can add artists space and galleries. Originally, 52 Webster was supposed to be artists' lofts. What happened? Is an alternative space viable, say, one closer to North Ave? Several people have submitted ideas for museums (New Rochelle, film, and cartoon museums). I have probably left out some more gems in the rough, but, definitely, NR is an arts and entertainment culture at its core.

Posted in: Arts + Culture, All Placemaking Ideas
Tagged: Arts, Culture, Jazz, entertainment, cabaret, music, concerts, poetry, performing arts, fine arts, galleries, museums, dance