Creative Alliance breaks ground for the ‘Creativity Center’

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A rendering of the Creative Alliance’s planned Creativity Center. The multi-purpose building will contain classrooms, a dance studio and a teaching kitchen. Rendering courtesy of Quinn Evans Architects.

Creative Alliance will break ground Thursday on an expansion called the Creativity Center, a multi-purpose building containing classrooms, a dance studio and a teaching kitchen.

The addition will be built on the site of the old La Raza Cantina bar at 3137 Eastern Avenue, and across the street from Creative Alliance’s flagship location, the former Patterson Theater at 3134 Eastern Avenue.

The new building has been designed by Quinn Evans Architects to support life-long learning with spaces for workshops, classes, dances, performances, community dinners and other gatherings.

The groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday. When the expansion is complete, the two Creative Alliance buildings will form a “cultural gateway” on Eastern Avenue to Highlandtown’s Arts and Entertainment District.

“The Creativity Center builds on two decades of our successful collaborations with Baltimore City Public Schools, Enoch Pratt Free Libraries, community partners, artists and educators, residents and funders to strengthen Southeast Baltimore neighborhoods and schools,” said Founding Director Margaret Footner, in a statement. “Creative Alliance’s innovative youth education, training, and multicultural community-building programs will be expanded and modeled at the Creativity Center.”

“This expansion is a testament to the Creative Alliance’s capacity to serve more children, youth, families, and seniors, while remaining a vital, energetic community hub for Baltimore,” said Doreen Bolger, Co-chair of The Campaign for Creativity. The campaign was launched to raise $5.6 million for the expansion and has already reached more than 90 percent of its goal.

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