Apply Now
Opened
1996

Washington Studios

A Lesson in Renovation

315 Lake Avenue North, Duluth, MN, 55806

Gallery

Studio

Gallery

Studio Pre-construction

Studio Post-construction

Exterior

Ryan Tischer

Ryan Tischer

Donna Heise

Donna Heise

WSAC.mov

WSAC Video

Tabs

Overview

Built in 1911, Washington Junior High School served Duluth students until it closed in 1992. Artspace acquired the building and transformed it into an affordable live/work artists’ cooperative — the first Artspace project outside the Twin Cities. In an unusual arrangement, the cooperative shares the six-story red brick building with a city-run community center that includes the former school’s gymnasium, pool and offices.

Many of Washington Studios’ 39 live/work units retain the chalkboards and cloakrooms of the former classrooms. The original gymnasium running track was preserved as a balcony in each of two split-level units. Shared amenities include a gallery, two dance studios, three music rehearsal rooms, meeting rooms, laundry rooms, project room, children’s playground and large parking lot.

Washington Studios occupies a prominent site in Duluth’s economically challenged Central Hillside neighborhood. Many of its units offer spectacular views of downtown Duluth, the busy harbor and majestic Lake Superior. The downtown shopping district and Canal Park, where tourists gather to watch the ore boats pass under Duluth’s historic lift bridge, are within walking distance. 

Development Cost

$7.1 million

Architect

LHB Engineers & Architects

Learn More
SHARE THIS PAGE
Our Thanks to...
FINANCING

Duluth Economic Development Authority
Duluth Housing and Redevelopment Authority
Duluth Housing Trust Fund / Community Investment Fund
National Equity Fund
TCF Bank

FUNDERS

Duluth Art Institute
Duluth-Superior Area Community Foundation
Fryberger Buchanan Law Firm
Grand Portage Indian Reservation
Independent School District 709
Jay & Rose Phillips Family Foundation
The McKnight Foundation
Northwest Area Foundation