POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- As Poughkeepsie nears its first comprehensive zoning code update in 34 years, fans of local artists have been pushing for the creation of an arts district in the downtown area.
Currently the city has a number of cultural hotspots. However, the rezoning would work to centralize the art movement into a walkable area and simultaneously provide a face lift to the city's core.
Poughkeepsie officials hope they'll attract more artists, performers and tourists by focusing the art movement's momentum along a few blocks of main and market streets.
Dutchess County Arts Council President Linda Marston-Reid said, "The arts have traditionally been a way to bring an excitement, livability, and vibrancy to a downtown area."
Barrett Art Center Program Director Loretta Spence said, "It would make it so much easier for everyone to access the arts. It also makes it much easier to market the arts and it makes the arts a much more visible economic driver."
The Dutchess County Arts Council is also working on a plan to form a cultural center that would include nonprofit art groups, a gift shop, a museum quality space, and a black box theatre.
Mayor Tkazyik expects to have the rezoning passed by the end of the year.