The Tannery Arts Center is a live/work art community in Santa Cruz County, created through a joint effort by the former Redevelopment Agency of the City of Santa Cruz, Artspace, and the Tannery Arts Center. Artspace is a nationally acclaimed nonprofit developer of affordable space for artists and arts organizations, which has successfully developed and managed many artist live/work projects throughout the country. Tannery Arts Center (TAC) was a local nonprofit organization governed by a board of directors representing business, the public and the arts. TAC helped guide the direction of the overall project, served as the fundraising arm for the Colligan Theater, and constructed the theater.
After acquiring the property, the Redevelopment Agency leased a portion of it to Artspace for the construction of the Tannery Lofts, which provides 100 units of affordable housing for artists. The Redevelopment Agency also renovated historic buildings to create Working Studios. This building was master leased to Artspace, which subsequently leased the individual studio spaces to artists, and continues to manage the property. In addition, the Redevelopment Agency refurbished the historic Kron House, which now serves as the offices for the Arts Council of Santa Cruz County.
The state dissolved Redevelopment Agencies in 2011. Since then the City’s Economic Development Department continues to coordinate the project and to work with Artspace, Arts Council Santa Cruz County and the community of artists to continue to develop the property and provide new opportunities for the arts to flourish.