Our New Home
Near West Theatre’s new building is the culmination of dreams, persistence, community investment, collaboration, and belief in a vision that began well over a decade ago. Opening this facility, located within a flourishing arts district, is allowing us to expand the reach and impact of our mission in ways we’ve never been able to before.
So while we venture into new terrain, we proudly carry forward our 38 year legacy and mission “to build loving relationships and engage diverse people in strengthening their sense of identity, passion, and purpose, individually and in community, through transformational theatre arts experiences.” We will continue to bring together people of all ages and backgrounds to build long-lasting relationships and create extraordinary theatre at affordable prices for the community.
See below for more information about our new theater!
ABOUT THE BUILDING
Near West Theatre’s new building is the culmination of dreams, hard work, investment, and belief in a vision that began nine years ago. Opening this new theater marks a new era for Near West Theatre. We’ve transformed lives and strengthened community through our extraordinary theater experiences for 35+ years. This new performance venue, located within a flourishing arts district, will allow us to expand the reach and impact of our mission in ways we’ve never been able to before! The design is by Richard Fleischman Architects of Cleveland.
Our new $7.3 million theater in the Gordon Square Arts District in the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood is:
- Fully accessible (for audiences and cast members)
- Welcoming to all with our continued commitment to affordable programming
- Multi-purposed, with areas for rehearsals, rentals, or alternative performance space
- A new civic space on the Near West Side with vibrant and varied programming all year long
- A super-energy efficient design, incorporating Passivhaus design elements, including solar panels and extra thick walls for insulation
- A temperature-controlled facility providing comfort to cast and audience alike
- Flexible to offer versatile staging options (proscenium, thrust, or in the round)
- An intimate performance space for an audience of 275, with new cushioned seats and balcony access for further seating
Click here to see how our super-insulated walls were designed and constructed.
HOW THE NEW THEATER CAME TO BE
In 2006, Near West Theatre embarked upon a collaborative capital campaign through the Gordon Square Arts District to create a permanent home and be a part of the revitalization of the Detroit-Shoreway Neighborhood. GSAD is a unique collaboration of Cleveland Public Theatre (CPT), Near West Theatre (Near West) and the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Corporation, owner of the Capitol Theatre, that uses the arts as a catalyst for economic development and job creation through preservation and renovations of historical buildings and complementary new construction. The $30 million campaign funded an enhanced Detroit Avenue streetscape and signage, additional parking for the business district, acquisition and renovations to the CPT complex, the reopening of the long-shuttered Capitol Theatre, and construction of Near West’s first permanent performance venue.
A groundbreaking ceremony in 2012 at our new location of W. 67th St and Detroit Avenue marked the next chapter in our Theatre’s story. But this was more than just an event marking the beginning of construction. It was a ceremony for members of the Near West Theatre community to “claim the ground” for the continuation and growth of the Theatre’s mission and values of love, barrier-breaking, diversity, truth, passion and purpose.
JUST THE FACTS
WHAT: After 37 years of mounting large musicals in rented space, Near West Theatre constructed its own theater. The new building creates possibilities Near West has never had: a stage with fly space and wings, room for rehearsals, and access for a larger and more diverse audience, of all abilities, to enjoy its performances. The new theater is in the heart of the Gordon Square Arts District and adds to the vibrancy of this burgeoning theater and arts destination on Cleveland’s near west side.
WHERE: The new theater is located at 6702 Detroit Avenue, on the corner of W. 67th Street.
WHEN: Groundbreaking occurred on November 27, 2012; opening season began Spring 2015.
- Square feet – 25,550
- Site – .64 acres
- Seats – 275
- Stage options – proscenium, thrust or in the round
- Fully accessible and ADA compliant
- Public plaza connects Detroit Avenue to new theater’s front door
- Architect – Richard Fleischman + Partners Architects, Cleveland
- Building Cost: $7.3M – raised through the $30M collective Gordon Square Arts District campaign