Tours of Arts Center
BY APPOINTMENT ONLY
To schedule a tour of the Simpsonville Arts Center, email Arts Center Manager Melissa Sturgis at firstname.lastname@example.org
History of Simpsonville Arts Center
The building on Academy Street that now serves as the Simpsonville Arts Center was constructed in 1939 as Simpsonville Elementary School by the Works Progress Administration, an agency that completed public works projects during the Great Depression. Simpsonville Elementary shared the auditorium and gymnasium (both of which still exist today) with Simpsonville High School, which opened on the same property in 1921 before its closing and demolition in 1957. The elementary school closed in 2002, after which the City of Simpsonville purchased the building for a future arts center. A South Carolina Historical Marker was awarded to the building in 2015 by the S.C. Archives & History Center.
Breathing New Life Into an Old Building
The City of Simpsonville received in 2019 a $500,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission for the Simpsonville Arts Center renovation projection, Phase 1 of which is estimated to cost $2.4 million to complete. DP3 Architects, which created the new design for the Arts Center, began renovations in summer 2021. Included in the renovations are improvements to the auditorium with new windows, seats, lighting and sound, a new lobby with a ticket window and concessions booth, new HVAC system and new exterior windows. Completed construction is expected in winter 2021.