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Chris Bonnell

What’s Happening in The League’s Alexandria Spaces?

Summary & Call-to-Action:

As The Art League’s cherished Madison Annex prepares to close its doors in 2024, we’re launching a transformative journey to remain in our hometown. This involves repurposing two distinct spaces: 1) an inactive print shop warehouse located at 800 Slaters Lane, and 2) an shell space at The Muse condominium, 1201 North Royal Street, into a dynamic art school campus: The Art League Creative Campus.

To achieve this, we are seeking donations and support to cover Phase One buildout costs estimated at 1.2 million dollars. Your involvement is crucial in ensuring The Art League continues to thrive as a vital part of the community.

To help with our Classroom Relocation Project and kick off the development of the Old Town North Arts District, the City Council has approved our application for a secured construction loan funding package through the Industrial Development Authority (IDA) and Alexandria Economic Development Partnership (AEDP). In late February, City Council greenlit the expansion of the AEDP/IDA/League partnership to support the League as the first cultural tenant in the new Old Town North Arts District.

Collaborating with AEDP/IDA will fortify our presence in the Alexandria neighborhood, overcoming challenges posed by high real estate costs, and helping create a new Art League cultural campus in our hometown.

For an overview of the Classroom Relocation Project and the progress made on our new Creative Campus, please check out our recent presentation:

Campus Construction Begins


Montgomery Center (Madison Annex)

The Madison Annex, housed in the Montgomery Center, is set to be replaced by a mixed-use development featuring residential units, retail, and arts components. Construction is anticipated to commence in Fall 2024, allowing The Art League to continue its operations at the Madison Annex until July 2024.

Torpedo Factory Art Center

As a foundational tenant of the Torpedo Factory Art Center, The Art League occupies studio spaces on the first and second floors, housing the gallery, three classroom studios, art supply store, and administrative headquarters. Our one-year lease, ending September 30, 2024, aligns with the City’s efforts to revitalize the Torpedo Factory Art Center, as evidenced by the Torpedo Factory Stakeholder Task Force’s recent findings.

City Manager Jim Parajon presented the consultant research results to the City Council on December 12, 2023, with an opportunity for questions. No vote was be taken. 

To watch or listen to the meeting recording or access the pdf of the presentation, click here

Old Town North Arts District

The establishment of an Arts and Cultural District in Old Town North, approved by Alexandria City Council, positions The Art League as a vital arts and cultural anchor in the neighborhood. The Arts and Cultural District designation encourages the creation of arts and cultural spaces, aligning with our commitment to serve the community.

We are actively collaborating with the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership to secure programming in the new Old Town North Arts District.

How The Art League Community Can Help:

Funding & Advocacy

As The Art League navigates post-pandemic recovery, your support is essential. We are in the midst of a Relocation Project campaign with a one-million-dollar goal. Your contribution will enable us to secure new classroom space in 2024, ensuring our continued presence and mission impact.

To help our community stay informed about our progress, we’ve initiated “FAQ & Info Night” and “Office Hours” series to keep the community updated on the 2024 relocation. You can RSVP here for December’s “Office Hours.” We also encourage those interested to sign up for email alerts.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is The Art League Relocating? Yes and no.
Yes: the Madison Annex is tentatively scheduled to close in September 2024 with its classrooms relocating to 800 Slaters Lane.
No: Our offices, gallery, and other classrooms will remain at The Torpedo Factory.

Why? The Madison Annex building has been sold and is pending redevelopment in late summer 2024.

Where are you going? We’ve secured a ten-year lease at 800 Slaters Lane, a nearby empty warehouse with unique features suitable for our school’s needs.

Who are you working with? We are collaborating with extensive team comprised of the Alexandria Economic Development Partnership, the City of Alexandria, Cole & Denny Architects, Tartan Properties, Ed Lash of JiL Group, and The Art League’s Board of Directors and staff to create a new classroom home for the League.

How much will it cost? Phase One buildout costs are currently estimated at 1.2 million dollars. Your support is crucial for the success of our Relocation Project.

Will the school shut down during the move? Our goal is to ensure minimal disruption to classes. Contingency plans are in the works to help ensure the continuity of classes.

Your help is needed to support The Art League’s future—please consider donating today!

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