Create an “Arts Bank” arts and entertainment venue on Huntsville’s downtown square in the historic Regions Bank Building.
Utilize the historic Regions Bank building to provide a critical programming venue to draw Huntsvillians and tourists alike to downtown entertainment, restaurants, and retail. With programmatic leadership from The Arts Council and its member arts and cultural groups, this City-owned venue could be used to offer jazz and blues performances, improv/comedy/spoken word performances, literary readings, intimate classical music performances, independent film showings, classic film showings, etc. The historic bank building could also provide needed office space for area nonprofit arts and cultural organizations by day, with arts and entertainment programming in the evening and on weekends.
The bank building could become a central hub for other arts and entertainment activity on the square, hosting periodic downtown film competitions, mystery dinner theatre events, downtown scavenger hunts, small concerts and songwriters events, etc. The facility could also be used as an anchor for additional outdoor events downtown, such as en plein air arts events (similar to Asheville’s “City of 1,000 Easels”), international art & cultural celebrations, block parties, etc. As a community venue, the “Arts Bank” could also be used as a hub for the downtown Ghost Walks, community bike rides, volunteer base for 5k runs, etc. The “Arts Bank” and, specifically, its bank vault could be used to house an “Art Loan” program offering affordable fine art rentals to area businesses and individuals.
As a community, let’s preserve and program this beautiful historic property to enliven downtown and give Huntsvillians and visitors a reason to stay on the square after they eat at a great downtown restaurant or shop at Harrison Brothers.
Animate the downtown square with new arts and entertainment programming, engage more pedestrians, and pave the way for additional retail and residential development in the future.