As documented in Chapter 16 of Martin County's Comprehensive Plan, there is a great need for cultural facilities. Under 16.3 "Future Needs," it is stated that "existing arts facilities have been identified as insufficient, so planning for additional future populations must certainly address expansion of facilities and opportunities."
The Arts Foundation for Martin County believes converting the historic Stuart High School into a community Arts Campus will provide access to and create experiences in the arts and education. The self-sustaining campus will incorporate multiple mixed-use venues including space for working artists, performers, lectures, commerce, and office space.
How will it enhance the quality of our community? The campus will:
- Preserve the historical art deco building and grounds creating a regional destination;
- Foster public interaction with local artists including showings, demonstrations and classes;
- Incorporate SMART Technology space to be shared among tenant organizations and visitors;
- Serve as an anchor for downtown expansion;
- Be an incubator for interactions between the nonprofit arts community and the broader creative sector; and
- Become the facility providing the cultural infrastructure so essential to improving the life style of all Martin County residents.
News & Updates:
SHS Arts Campus | June 2021
The past few months have been a busy time as we work with Straticon Construction on the evaluation and due diligence for Stuart High School. One thing we've done is to take some groups through the space to help build enthusiasm for the project! The group pictured are representatives from many of the local arts groups who will want to be involved in the space as it comes to fruition. We anticipate wrapping up the due diligence by the end of July to then consider negotiations for a lease of the property (the historic buildings and some green space around them totaling approximately 2 acres).
SHS Arts Campus | March 23
The Martin County School Board voted 5-0 to support the agreement drafted by the school board attorney. The Arts Foundation board voted to approve the same agreement at its meeting on March 24. Straticon Construction will have 60 days, starting April 1st to inspect and evaluate the historic Stuart High School for renovation and repurposing as an arts center.
On Tuesday March 2, at a workshop meeting of the Martin County School Board, school board members authorized School Board Chairperson Marsha Powers and Superintendent Dr. John Millay to work with us to gain access to the buildings on the site for pre-construction evaluation.