A $10 million-plus renovation project is in the works for New York City's Nuyorican Poets Café, "a downtown stalwart that has survived decades of neighborhood change," the Wall Street Journal reported. The upgrade, which will more than double capacity at its East Village location, "includes a gut renovation of the dilapidated upper portion of its building on East Third Street between Avenues B and C, which its founders bought for less than $8,000 back in 1981. The three top floors, now used for storage, will be converted into performance, classroom and administrative space."
"We're a little bit like a one-room schoolhouse. Our prime spots tend to be booked months in advance," said executive director Daniel Gallant, adding that the project will help meet increased demand by artists and audiences, accommodate the organization's growing arts-education programs for underprivileged students, and offer more flexibility in programming.
Construction is expected to begin in 2018 and last for at least a year. The Nuyorican Poets Cafe "would close during that time, though Mr. Gallant said the organization plans to continue slam-poetry events and other core programs at other venues in the neighborhood and beyond," the Journal wrote.