U.S. Bank is investing $1.6 million in tax credit financing to enable Jazz St. Louis to expand its facilities and public education efforts in the Grand Center entertainment district.

Jazz St. Louis is receiving the investment from U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corporation (USBCDC), the community development subsidiary of U.S. Bank. The funds for the $8.4 million project were raised from federal New Markets Tax Credits, which were allocated to St. Louis Development Corporation. USBCDC’s investment joins that from David and Thelma Steward, John and Alison Ferring and loans from the Bank of Washington and Pulaski Bank.

The financing helped Jazz St. Louis acquire its existing Jazz at the Bistro facility and renovate and expand into the adjacent building at 3540 Washington Ave. in the Grand Center arts district. The expansion will enable the nonprofit organization to:

  • Increase Jazz St. Louis’ footprint to 25,116 square feet
  • Centralize its offices, classrooms and entertainment venue in one location
  • Increase youth outreach by 30 percent, or 16,000 young people a year
  • Increase after-school education program enrollment to 110 students
  • Boost listening room capacity by 40 percent to 250 seats
  • Generate 15 construction jobs paying
  • Create 25 full-time jobs, including 10 permanent positions
  • Generate an estimated economic impact of nearly $4 million a year

“The project is a perfect harmony of combining music education and the economic driver of an entertainment venue to add to the cultural landscape of St. Louis,” Steve Kramer, senior vice president of USBCDC. “Jazz St. Louis’ expansion will strengthen the Grand Center Arts District and provide a top-quality jazz learning environment for our local musicians.”

This the 27th project that USBCDC has invested in with St. Louis Development Corporation, bringing the bank’s New Market Tax Credit investment level to $315.5 million in the St. Louis region.

“U.S. Bank and SLDC have been strong partners on many excellent projects and this one promises to have a lasting impact on music education and the cultural life in St. Louis for years to come,” Bill Seddon, director of the new markets tax credit program of SLDC, said. “Now visitors and residents alike can appreciate a fantastic venue to hear the best local and national jazz played today.”

Grand Center Stars As Entertainment District
The Fabulous Fox Theatre, on North Grand Avenue, showcases Broadway Series, live concerts, dance performances and special events all year round.

The Fox Theatre was originally built in 1929 for William Fox by theatre architect C. Howard Crane in a style known as Siamese Byzantine. After years of decline, the theatre was purchased by Leon and Mary Strauss and beautifully restored in the 1980s by Pantheon Construction Company.

David Robertson officially began his tenure as the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra’s 12th Music Director, when the season opened in September 2005. Robertson, the inspiring and charismatic American-born conductor, has received international acclaim for his ability to motivate audiences with his innovative programs.

The Saint Louis Symphony celebrates the fact that it is an American Orchestra that gained international attention with an American conductor (Leonard Slatkin) performing an American repertory.

As the second-oldest symphony orchestra in the United States, the Saint Louis Symphony honors its tradition of presenting stellar performers and captivating works for generations of concert-goers.