Art + Culture

Two Trees Launches Culture Space Subsidy Program

Two Trees Management Co. renews its commitment to support DUMBO’s thriving arts and culture scene by announcing the launch of its new Culture Space Subsidy Program.   For decades, Two Trees has assisted local artists and groups by providing reduced or free rent in Two Trees buildings.  The new Culture Space Subsidy program will formalize this procedure through a competitive application process.  Additionally, the program seeks to bolster innovation and community engagement by requiring that tenants provide a positive social impact to DUMBO.

“Two Trees is committed to cultivating a vibrant community in DUMBO, and the arts and culture are part of the neighborhood’s fabric,” said Lisa Kim, Cultural Affairs Director at Two Trees. “As DUMBO’s popularity – and the city’s commercial rents – rise, it has been impossible to keep up with the huge demand for affordable space. I am thrilled that we are launching a program that creates a formal application process that will open DUMBO up to a wider group of arts and culture tenants, and make the neighborhood more competitive in our city’s art scene.”

According to the Two Trees press release, the Culture Space Subsidy program will adhere to the following:

Space will be awarded to applicants that best demonstrate their capabilities and intent to provide a social benefit to Brooklyn and a proven track record of community engagement. Two Trees will maintain the amount of space it provides at below market rents – more than 100,000 square feet – with half reserved for art galleries and long-term community groups such as St. Ann’s Warehouse, Smack Mellon, and the DUMBO BID, and half made available through this new program. More than 50 arts and cultural groups currently operate in Two Trees space in DUMBO.

Groups chosen through the formal application process will receive three-year leases at $12/foot, in buildings that command market rents of more than $40 per foot. When current leases expire, existing tenants who are eligible will be able to apply to extend their leases, and those who are selected will actually receive a rent decrease from current below market rents to $12.

The program will be open to arts, education, and community focused groups, primarily, but not limited to, 501c3 nonprofit organizations. Professional artists with a strong exhibition history or community focused practice are also eligible.

The commercial office and studio spaces range from 700 to 4,000 square feet, most with natural light and high ceilings. All tenants that participate in the program will share in the amenities enjoyed by all Two Trees commercial tenants, including access to freight elevators, communal conference rooms, and high-speed internet.

The Two Trees Cultural Space Subsidy Program will have open applications that are reviewed annually. Applications for the inaugural year of the program can be found at and are due by July 31, 2014.”