Thursday, February 18, 2010

Rubells buy Randall School Building

A press release from the Corcoran College of Art and Design has announced the sale of the former Randall School (which used to be the Millennium Arts Center), which sold for $6.5 million to Telesis Corporation and CACB Holdins LLC. The Corcoran bought the school for $6.2 million in 2006.

The Corcoran had bought the space four years ago to use the 80,000 square feet of space for studio, exhibition and classroom space. Back then the Corcoran's Paul Greenhalgh said that "Part of our strategic plan is to grow the student base and make the college more competitive." And then there was this idea that:

Once the municipal reviews are completed, Greenhalgh said, the Corcoran will sell the property for $8.2 million to Monument, which will manage the building. The profit, said Gentry, will go to the city's public-school modernization fund.
I don't know what happened to that plan, but Don and Mera Rubell, owners of CACB, will apparently convert the school (located at 65 I Street, SW) into a new contemporary art museum for the DC area, a hotel and perhaps even a private residence?

More evidence of the Rubells' deep and growing interest in the DC area visual arts scene. This is more great news for DC artists and our cultural tapestry.

I'm personally glad that the Rubells have taken over this building, as I think that it may be better for the DC art scene.


Jenny Walton said...

I live in SW. It's a nice quite neighborhood. I'm excited about the possibility of a museum, especially being an artist, but I also just saw my affordable rent take a hike up. Particularly my affordable rent that allows me to have a separate studio.

It's not that big a neighborhood and is already going through a lot of change that is "modernizing" it. Do so to a point of not having personality, with lots of big glass buildings, in particular the new developments on M street SE by the Baseball Stadium and 4th & M SW near the Waterfront Metro. The new architectural behemoths remind me of Mussolini's New Rome in their stark and imposing ginormousness. All it needs is a square coliseum.

If they can work a way into keeping with the continuity of the residential neighborhood, it's history and current architectural gems, without tearing down and building another glass cube, then I'll be even more excited.

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