The dilapidated building at 5 E. Main St. in Springville got another extension to its life support.
The Springville Center for the Arts raised more than $30,000 in 30 days from more than 300 donors. That money will go to shore up the building to keep it from collapsing and taking two additional buildings listed in the National Register District down with it.
“It was a great campaign. It was so nice because it was so many people participating,” said Seth Wochensky, executive director of the Springville Center for the Arts.
An engineer already is working on the two-story brick building, which has a gaping hole where the roof fell into the basement, he said.
The 30-day fundraising blitz was through Indiegogo, an online fundraising platform. By the time it ended Oct. 20, donations had topped $38,000 in amounts ranging from $5 to $1,000. One-third of the donations came from outside the Springville area, and many of those were from former village residents, Wochensky said.
Wochensky said the building has been at many crossroads through its recent history. But at each potential roadblock, things seem to work out, he said.
This initial fundraising, while exhilarating, paves the way for much more. The total project consists of restoring the building and converting it into “Art’s Cafe,” a restaurant serving coffee and light meals on the first floor, as well as programming space and apartments for visiting artists on the second floor. There also will be workshop space for fine craft artisans, connecting the cafe and residency program.
The total cost is estimated at about $800,000, he said, with about $450,000 to be raised in cash and the rest in donated labor and materials. There already have been some sizable donations, including Jay Biscup of Seneca Steel Erectors, a member of the Arts Center board, who has pledged to donate steel and manpower needed to shore up the building. Architect Jay Braymiller offered to donate his time to design the new interior.