I agree to Idea What is your idea for the Annie Merts Center on Randolph Street?
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I disagree to Idea What is your idea for the Annie Merts Center on Randolph Street?

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What is your idea for the Annie Merts Center on Randolph Street?

Would you like to see loft apartments or condos, an arts center, another school? What are your ideas?

Submitted by 1 year ago

Comments (23)

  1. I think by creating loft condos or an artist community would be a valuable assest to the city. Yes we currently already have Lowe Mill but there are so many artists around and not enough locations for everyone to sell their work. Also, by incorporating loft condos it would be more affordable housing and possibilities of more businesses being built downtown.Maybe by rebuilding on the direct outskirts of downtown and working inward to revitalize downtown could be another approach.

    1 year ago
    1. Would LOVE to see reasonably priced loft condo's in Annie Merts. There's plenty of parking and the neighborhood is exactly what Lenden is trying to duplicate. Would also like to see some artists workplaces there.

      1 year ago
  2. If one is to choose between this building and east clinton for an arts center, this is it. Check out this project in Willimantic CT, as an example: http://www.artspacect.com/windham/

    1 year ago
  3. The Annie Merts Center should be reconfigured to serve the community as a Performing Arts Center. The building already houses large spaces that could be used as practice facilities for the HSO, theatre and music groups. These same spaces could also serve as concert facilities for smaller groups; chamber orchestras, bands etc. Having guaranteed access to a professional, Performing Arts Center would enhance the viability of events like the Twickingham Festival.

    By providing our Performing Arts organizations with a central facility, we could also resolve nagging, practical problems like ticketing. A centralized Performing Arts Center would also provide shared business and office facilities to groups and organizations on perpetually tight budgets, giving them the ability to focus more of their time and resources on performing. At this point The Arts Council, HSO and virtually all of our performing art community are operating their own offices. These separate offices are expensive, hard to find and duplicate basic needs.

    A Performing Arts Center in the Annie Merts Center will provide the Huntsville community with another, needed cultural facility. The size and previous use of the building will make for an easy transition to a unified and synergistic confluence of Performing Arts organizations. And, because of the building’s location, this can happen within the Old Town neighborhood without the associated headaches of traffic and parking. The Annie Merts Center has ample parking right off California providing access to the building without adding significantly to the neighborhood traffic flow.

    Because a Performing Arts Center will replace existing expenses already incurred and budgeted for by the organizations, such a Center should be able to be operated at minimal expense—if not a profit. A very rough count from the Arts Council web site lists 50+/- performing arts organizations in Huntsville---big and small. These groups are paying more for their individual facilities than, if unified, they would pay for the annual mortgage and maintenance expenses of a centralized Performing Arts Center.

    A Performing Arts Center in the Annie Merts Center would:

    • Maintain a significant, historic property in the heart of Huntsville.

    • Provide a cost-effective and synergistic central facility for community performing arts groups.

    • Enrich the Huntsville cultural scene with a new practice and performance venue.

    • Add to the vibrancy of the Downtown community.

    1 year ago
    1. Include opening up space and putting down a dance floor for SOCIAL DANCING

      1 year ago
    2. Renovations inside would be needed. Seems like the old auditorium has been re-configured?

      Parking lot on hill would be great.

      Community Chorus could be one group to use it. Theater Huntsville may be another. Space for sewing rooms, set construction, offices. Good looking building.

      1 year ago
  4. If you've been to Lowe Mill Arts Center off Seminole, you know how amazing it is. I can imagine the Mertz building as well as East Clinton School full of artists studios where they can create, show and sell their work to not only visitors from Huntsville but all over the world. We get lots of seminar participants traveling to Huntsville and this would be something we could really be proud of. As far as funding, we know the city doesn't have the money but perhaps private investors (such as what happened with Lowe Mill) who could help creat a legacy for themselves by promoting talented artists of every type.

    1 year ago
    1. Renting out space in the Merts Center will generate substantial income... this is a BIG building!

      1 year ago
  5. Should be no problem for the dance floor. Is there still a gym in the building?

    1 year ago
  6. A friend mentioned moving the Senior Center to Annie Mertz, which would cause additional traffic, but so would a school or arts center but I do love the idea of an old fashioned dance hall.

    1 year ago
    1. With the parking lot just off California the impact of traffic will be minimal. By the way, there are 150 spots in the main lot and 25 next to the building.

      1 year ago
  7. I agree with Curtis that using the Annie Merts building as a performing arts center would solve several problems for the community.

    1 year ago
  8. An arts center would be terrific--a place for galleries, classes, meetings for visual and performing arts, as well as studio space. Maybe small theater productions should be included.

    1 year ago
  9. It isn't very clear but to vote on this you need to do it in the very upper lefthand corner of the page....above the picture of the building. It would be nice to move this issue up a bit.

    1 year ago
  10. I would love to see a natural history museum go in. All big cities have natural history museums... we already have an art museum and a version of a science museum, but no history?? Where do the dinosaur bones go?

    1 year ago
  11. The Annie Merts center would be perfect for the Huntsville High Freshman Academy. This would save school board money by using an existing building instead of spending money we don't have on a new building currently in the planning stages. What a great way to use the building, for something it was already designed for.

    1 year ago
    1. I have wondered why the board didn't move 6th graders back to elementery schools and the 9th graders back in with the 7th & 8th....junior high again. That would free up space in the high schools. Have passed this along to the board before and left the suggestion at the schools office. Don't know if it was ever even considered.

      1 year ago
  12. Another good location for Huntsville Ballet Company and school.

    1 year ago
    1. If HCCA went, in the ballet company would again be a good pairing for the space.

      1 year ago
  13. An arts center would be awesome if it could also be a performance venue. However, the downtown idea that the Arts Council submitted would have access to restaurants which would be a great advantage and also help downtown businesses.

    1 year ago
  14. There's a building on Jefferson St that has been sitting idle for years now. Over ten years ago, I emailed the group that owns it and suggested that the building be renovated into a theatre/arts center. It could have had space for HAL on the street level, sewing/costume rooms, set shops, ticket office, boxes as well as auditorium seating (like the old opera theatre Huntsville had at one time or like the old Elks Theatre). I had the support of one of Huntsville's very talented theatre people -- Lee Deal. Together we emailed them several times. Never even the courtesy of a reply. It would be nice if someone knows a celebrity/entrepreneur who has interest in things of this type would contact that celebrity/entrpreneur, make them aware.

    1 year ago
  15. Turn the building into apartments for both seniors and young families. maybe one section of the existing building will house small senior apartment units and on the oppisite section of the building have apartments with young families. Have a possible commons area for all to enjoy. a building with it's own neighborhood within the existing historical neighborhood.

    1 year ago
  16. Turn the building into apartments for both seniors and young families. maybe one section of the existing building will house small senior apartment units and on the oppisite section of the building have apartments with young families. Have a possible commons area for all to enjoy. a building with it's own neighborhood within the existing historical neighborhood.

    1 year ago

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    1 year ago

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