Creating A Cultural Corridor in Charlotte Amalie
Happy New Year! May 2021 be a year of health, peace and prosperity for our community. Today, we are asking the question: Can cultural heritage be an economic driver in the U. S. Virgin Islands? We say yes. In 2021, we will begin fundraising for Phase One of our project which began as a post Transfer Centennial collaboration between Virgin Islands and Danish architects, historians, and community activists known as the In Search of Identity Project. It envisions the creation of a cultural corridor that will spark economic activity and preserve the history and culture of Charlotte Amalie and the entire Virgin Islands. It aligns with the cultural heritage tourism, workforce development and training and small business development goals of the territory.
Our project is the product of town plans, developed and approved with community input as an initiative of the Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority. Seed money was provided by the Virgin Islands Legislature and the Danish government.
The Virgin Islands Museum, Civic and Cultural Center, St. Thomas, Inc. is the non-profit created to develop the J. Antonio Jarvis School Complex into a School for Arts and Culture. It will be developed in conjunction with the adjacent Danish era Freemason Lodge, two-story brick ruin and other open lots which will become a modern Cultural/Civic Center and Museum to feature the art, history, and culture of the Territory and provide a venue to express, share and cultivate traditions, wisdom, art, and talents of the community. The renovated Jarvis School will provide classroom and workshop settings. The Museum will provide a historic and modern chronology, collections, art and cultural exhibitions, public areas, gift shop, lecture hall/theater and restaurant.
As we develop our project, we are partnering with the Dion Parsons Music School and My Brothers Workshop to enhance learning opportunities for young people in music and the building and construction arts.
We invite you to join us as we begin this new era of celebrating our history and culture while we meet current and future community needs for education, training, small business creation and economic development in our community.
Stay tuned to our Facebook, blog posts and other media engagements for information on how you can participate in this effort.