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First level of The Wave parking garage to become art and retail district

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Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012 7:30 am

On Tuesday, Dec. 18, the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, along with the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey and the Noyes Museum of Art, commemorated their partnership with the announcement of a proposed home base for the Atlantic City Arts and Culture District in Atlantic City. That home base will be a new 16,000-square-foot art and retail space located on the first floor of The Wave parking garage in the heart of A.C.

Representatives from each organization were present at the announcement. They included CRDA Executive Director John Palmieri, Stockton President Dr. Herman J. Saatkamp and Noyes Museum of Art Executive Director Michael Cagno.

The CRDA’s partnership with Stockton and Noyes is a key first step toward bringing the Atlantic City Arts and Cultural District to fruition. As an important component of the Atlantic City Tourism Master Plan - officially signed into law in April 2011 - the Arts and Culture District seeks to create a center for arts and culture in the downtown community through innovative partnerships between local civic leaders, artists and art institutions.

Palmieri discussed how this arts and cultural alliance with Stockton and Noyes had been in the process for 10 months, but he believes it was well worth the wait. He also is pleased The Wave Garage will act as mainstay to the project.

The CRDA, which was responsible for building The Wave garage earlier this year, had always considered it more than merely a parking garage.  They saw its palpable potential as an activity generator in terms of retail. But it was through discussions with Stockton and Noyes that it became apparent The Wave was an ideal location for an art gallery, thus becoming the anchor for A.C.’s recently-developed Arts and Culture District.

Cagno says this partnership will give credence to the Arts and Culture District, as well as help deliver the three pillars on which Cagno believes the Arts and Culture District stands: quality – it will ensure a high quality of art and artists; accessibility – it will offer open opportunities to established and emerging artists; and sustainability – it will facilitate the growth and expansion of arts and culture in Atlantic City.

The Noyes Museum at Stockton will take responsibility for leasing out and managing the project, which will feature a ceramics studio, gallery space and individual artist studios where local artisans will be able to create their works of art on site, as well as sell their original pieces to the public. 

As for Palmieri, he says he’s excited to help create an energy behind the nongambling attributes of Atlantic City. Beyond the obvious economic benefits to having an arts culture, Palmieri believes this venture holds a spiritual and civic component that also can be built upon.

“This project represents a historic moment in Atlantic City’s continued resurgence,” Saatkamp says.  “It’s a splendid addition to Atlantic City.”


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