Individual Studios: Frequently Asked Questions

What is the East Garrison project?

The East Garrison project is an adaptive reuse of a historic district on the former Ft. Ord military base in Monterey County, California. The pedestrian-friendly development includes 1400 homes, a town center and an arts district. East Garrison is being developed by Union Community Partners.

What is Arts Habitat, Inc.?

Arts Habitat, a non-profit community organization dedicated to fostering affordable, ecologically responsible living and working spaces for artists, was formed in 1991 in response to the base closure of Fort Ord. That event offered a unique opportunity to remedy the chronic problem hampering growth of the arts in the Central Coast region - lack of affordable space for creating and presenting the arts. Arts Habitat will take responsibility for the artists selection process at East Garrison, coordinate and deliver arts programming services to residential and workspace users, and promote arts activities and events there.

What is Artspace Projects, Inc.?

Artspace is a national non-profit real estate corporation whose mission is “to create, foster, and preserve affordable space for artists and arts organizations”. Their development activities have included construction/renovation of over 563 units of live/work space for low/moderate income artists. Artspace now owns 18 buildings in nine states; fourteen live/work projects; three working studio buildings and one performing arts center. They have recently completed the Tannery Lofts project for Santa Cruz artists. Artspace will develop and manage the live/work buildings at East Garrison.

How do I get on the list?

Please contact Arts Habitat and tell us what you’re interested in—what medium you work in, how much space you need, and any other requirements. We’ll send you progress reports and let you know when we’re ready to begin leasing studios.

When will spaces be available?

Nearly $30 million has been invested in the site so far, including half of the infrastructure, but building progress was halted in the summer of 2009 due to the international economic downturn. The actual completion date for construction has not been determined, pending analysis of the real estate market.

What will the per-square foot cost be for space?

Costs are still being determined

Are there income qualifications for studio users?

There are no income restrictions for studio users. Income eligibility applies only to residents of the live/work housing.

Are utilities included in the rent?

Whether utilities will be included in rent has yet to be determined. It is expected that individual buildings will be separately metered for electricity.

What about insurance?

Tenants will be required to carry commercial general liability insurance.

What will be provided and what kind of improvements will I need to make?

Studio buildings will have basic utilities in the space. It is Artspace’s experience that it is important to provide the greatest amount of flexibility to accommodate a variety of disciplines. Tenants will be responsible for their tenant improvements, which must meet Monterey County building code requirements.

If I invest in improvements will I be able to get a long-term lease?


Who will manage the property?

Artspace Projects will engage a local property management company to provide on-site management services.

Will there be parking?

Yes, on the street.

How do we dispose of hazardous materials?

Tenants will be expected to dispose of all hazardous materials in accordance with California State law and all local ordinances. An on-site program for recycling/disposal of hazardous materials and Health and Safety workshops will be offered to all tenants with safety information available on site.

Will artists be able to make work, sell work, teach classes and have space open to the public?

Yes. Visitor-serving activities, classes and public events are encouraged.

Are there rules or restrictions on studio use?

Yes. The rules and regulations are being developed; one is that they are working studios, not residences.

Are there other businesses and/or services planned for the East Garrison?

Monterey County Libraries will operate a library offering standard library services, a community room and a historical interpretive center in the town center. The Salinas Rural Fire District will have a station at the East Garrison. The County Sheriff’s Office will maintain a substation in the town center. Retail and food services will be available in the town center and historic district.