Arts Alliance has until Nov. 6 to vacate building

The city-owned 716 and 720 Main buildings are located next to Elk River Meats.

by Joni Astrup
Associate editor
The Elk River Area Arts Alliance must vacate its space in downtown Elk River by Nov. 6.
The Arts Alliance building at 716 Main St. is owned by the city.
The notification from the city came after the Elk River Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) voted Oct. 3 to get bids to demolish the Arts Alliance building and the vacant adjoining building at 720 Main St.
The HRA’s vote was spurred by an inspection that reported “failed roof trusses” in the 720 Main building and concern that a heavy snow load has the potential to collapse the roof.
The Arts Alliance has been in the 716 Main building since 2008.
In a letter to the editor on page 4 of this week’s Star News, Arts Alliance Chairman David Raymond said the notice to vacate comes just at the start of the Arts Alliance’s most profitable two months of the year.
One option the Arts Alliance would like the city to consider is bracing up the two failed trusses in 720 Main. That would cost less and give the Arts Aliance time to find a new, permanent location.
“The Board of the Arts Alliance asks the HRA to have their engineer include the cost of stabilizing the parts of the roof that are failing so they can have all the options to consider before forcing out a viable business and creating another empty hole in the face of the downtown business district,” according to the Raymond letter.