Building for Culture:
Arts Cultural Facilities
Deadline: passed
Contact: Debra Twersky 206 263.1610
Taproot Theatre Company, Mark Lund 2013

Faculty working backstage at the Cornish Playhouse © 2015
2013 Art Facilities Recipient

Securing funds to acquire, build, or renovate specialized space is one of the most challenging experiences facing any arts organization. 4Culture's Arts Facilities Program supports quality projects by organizations and local governments throughout King County, and has invested more than $40 million in the past two decades. The program is offered every 12 - 24 months.


This year, 4Culture and King County government will partner to make an exceptional $20 million investment in regional cultural infrastructure. The program will support jobs to create large, small, urban and rural arts and heritage facilities, improve access to cultural space for all, and preserve historic properties throughout King County.

Capital projects of every size and type are welcome, and proposals will be reviewed in groups of similar-sized projects. Applicants must expect to be able to spend funds within 36 months of the award date.

* All Arts organizations that received Building for Culture funding are listed below under Recipients; make sure to also check out the Heritage and Preservation organizations that received support.

Guidelines and Process for 2015 Program Below  |   Application Deadline: passed

Who Can Apply

King County nonprofit arts organizations of any size and public agencies

Eligible Applicants Are King County-Based:

  • Nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, and public agencies, other than K-12 schools or school districts, with at least a two-year operating history, tax-exempt status, and demonstrated long-term site control

Requirements for Applicant Organizations:

  • A legally-constituted and working board of directors
  • A proven record of providing arts/cultural programs and services, or detailed plans for future public benefits to be provided by new arts facilities
  • At least a two-year operating history as a legally constituted entity. Organizations may not apply under another organization's umbrella.
  • Tax exempt status, as a 501(c)(3) or other public corporation
  • If an applicant's tax-exempt eligibility is "pending," but the application is recommended for funding, no contract will be negotiated until nonprofit status has been confirmed. Contact staff to discuss your organization's status, if you are unsure.
  • Ability to sustain operational capacity beyond the completion of facility construction as evidenced by project and operating budgets and other plan documents
  • Control of the site through ownership or a long-term lease (at least 10 years)
  • The ability to enter into a contract that requires your organization to provide proof of nonprofit status and a W-9 form, and maintain liability insurance that names 4Culture as additional insured
  • ATTENDANCE AT AN APPLICATION WORKSHOP or individual consultation with 4Culture staff is required in order to apply to this cycle of the Arts Cultural Facilities program

What Gets Funded

Building, remodeling and buying facilities. (Need funding for equipment? Check out our Equipment funding program.)

Cultural Facilities Funding May Be Used For:

  • Capital projects, including purchase, construction and/or remodeling, that can utilize awarded funds within 36 months of the final funding approval
  • A portion of awards may be used for architectural/engineering design fees, testing, site analysis and/or construction documents
  • Building projects that bring facilities into compliance with Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended, and the Americans with Disabilities Act

Cultural Facility Funding May Not Be Used For:

  • Stand-alone feasibility studies at the outset of a project
  • General facility maintenance and repairs
  • The purchase of "consumable items" (i.e. light bulbs, small tools)
  • Operating expenses, any regular staff salaries, or program expenses
  • The purchase of equipment not integral to a capital project (fixed assets are not eligible for this bond funded cycle)
  • Fundraising costs associated with a capital project
Confused by language we use? Check out our glossary of terms


Application Deadline: passed
Funds will become available in early 2016.


How Much May I Request? Every size project is Welcome!

You must discuss your specific project details with staff before submitting your proposal. Your project budget determines the amount of your request. We suggest you use the following percentages as a general guideline:

Projects with budgets over $10 Million: Up to 5% of total project budget
Projects with budgets from $1 Million - $10 Million: Up to 10% of total project budget
Projects with budgets under $1 Million: Up to 25%, with a minimum request of $10,000

Application review panels will determine award amounts based on the number of applications and total funds available.

Applications to the Arts Cultural Facilities program are reviewed by staff for eligibility, accuracy, and completeness. Independent peer panels, composed of arts managers, architects, advancement professionals and other community representatives, meet to review applications. NOTE: All applicants must appear before a panel for a 10-minute interview. Be sure to send representatives who can answer questions regarding project budget, financial statements, and project goals and timelines. Following the review panel, funding recommendations are forwarded to Advisory Committees, the 4Culture Board, and the King County Council for final approval. In this year’s cycle, the complete review and approval process is expected to take up to 4 months from the time you submit an application to the time your award is approved, bonds are sold, and a contract that reimburses you for expenses is created.

Review Criteria

Review panels will select and recommend funding for the most highly qualified proposals based on the overarching criteria of excellence, feasibility and community impact. In addition, the panels will consider a project’s ability to leverage additional funding and to generate economic opportunities, including tourism. A guiding principle of the selection process will be to support a range of projects that reflect diversity in geography, discipline, budget size and ethnicity.

  • Clarity of the proposed project’s rationale, goals, and significance
  • Evidence of thoughtful planning of the project and its context in serving King County residents and visitors
  • Quality of the organization's existing and proposed programming, and the relationship of the project to furthering the mission and services of the organization
  • Applicant’s preparedness to develop, administer and complete the project within budgetary, logistical and time constraints described in the application
  • Evidence of a well-developed plan for raising funds, and of the applicant’s ability to use 4Culture funds to leverage other support for the project
  • Extent of community support and involvement evidenced by in-kind or cash donations from individuals, foundations, corporations or other government sources
  • Timeliness of the request: Applicants for construction or renovation funds must expect to be able to spend funds awarded within 36 months of the award date.
  • Financial stability of the applicant as evidenced by the operating budget and financial statements
  • Qualifications of those who will be involved in executing the project
  • Community support, which may include, but is not limited to, community involvement, endorsements, and in-kind or cash donations from individuals, foundations, corporations, or other government sources
Impact and Public Benefit
  • Impact of the project on the organization's ability to serve its community ("community" includes but is not limited to a geographic, cultural, ethnic or artistic community)
  • Evidence of support and lasting engagement with the community being served by the facility
  • Project’s contribution to increasing public access to arts and cultural experiences for under-served populations, including geographic areas not well served, disability projects aimed at meeting ADA goals and other specific audiences

Remember: Because of their different areas of expertise and geographic diversity, it is unlikely that every panelist will be familiar with your organization’s work. Keep that in mind as you draft your narrative responses to application questions.

Questions about your proposal or its eligibility? Contact Debra Twersky at 206.263.1610.

Applicants must attend a workshop, and/or schedule an individual meeting with 4Culture staff in advance of the application deadline to determine what information, i.e., drawings, purchase agreements, business plans or other documents may be appropriate to submit with the proposal.

Requirements and appeals

Learn about the legal requirements of award recipients, and about the process for appeal of a 4Culture award here.


What are the number and size of awards made each cycle?

Awards in the special Building 4Culture cycle will range from $10,000 to over $2,000,000. Generally, around 40% of the projects applying receive some funds.

Do you make partial awards?

Yes. Less than 1/4 of our applicants receive full funding in each cycle; most receive a portion of the funds requested.

If my organization is collaborating with other organizations to share ownership of equipment, can we submit a joint application?

Yes, we encourage creative uses of every facility so that cultural spaces are active 24/7!

Will 4Culture staff help me with my application?

Yes! Give us a call, send an email, or attend a free workshop. We are happy to answer questions and give pointers. We want to help you submit the best-possible application. Debra Twersky is your primary contact for the Cultural Facilities program. You can contact Deb at 206 263.1610.

If my project has been funded once through the Arts Facilities program can I get a second award?

Yes, you may apply and get funds more than once, as long as you can demonstrate that your project is moving forward and meeting your goals and timeline.

If I don't currently have site control or I need to apply under the umbrella of another organization could I still be eligible?

Call Deb Twersky to talk about your project and plan to attend a required workshop or set up a meeting for the special Building 4Culture facilities cycle.

Ready to Apply

How to prepare your application 

STEP 1 - Read all of the above sections
STEP 2 - Gather and prepare your information

You are required to submit your application using the online form. In this section, you will find information on how to prepare your application and submit support materials.

At the end of this section, a link will be provided to the Online Application.

Support Materials (Required)

You will be asked to submit the following 4 items in the "upload" step of the online application:
1. Project Budget (Required Upload)
Download the 4Culture project budget form provided here. Enter your estimated project costs in the Expenses column, and sources of income for the project in the Income column.

acrobat icon   Project Budget

2. Operating Budget (Required Upload)
You may use 4Culture's form provided here, or upload your organization's own multi-year operating budget that delineates Expenses and Income in the same categories as 4Culture's form. Please limit to one page budget; one page notes, Excel or PDF file formats only.

acrobat icon   3 Year Operating Budget

3. Balance Sheet (Required Upload)
You may use 4Culture's form provided here, or upload your organization's own balance sheet in the same categories as 4Culture's form. Please limit to one page, Excel or PDF file formats only

acrobat icon   Balance Sheet

4. Board List (Required Upload)
Submit a one page list of your organization's board members, their term limits and affiliations. Word or PDF file formats only.
4. Program/Event List (Required Upload)
Submit a one page list of your organization's events, programs, and/or primary activities from the last 12 months (include date or date range, location, and estimated attendance). Word or PDF file formats only.

Note: The online application system will not allow uploads of files larger than 2MB.


Additional Support Materials

Applicants must attend a workshop, and/or discuss with staff in advance what additional information, i.e., drawings, purchase agreements, business plans or other documents must be submitted with the proposal.
Mail/Deliver Instructions

Any additional support materials you submit must be mailed to, or dropped off at, 4Culture offices by the deadline date to:

Deb Twersky / 2015 Arts Cultural Facilities application
101 Prefontaine Place S
Seattle, WA 98104

Staff WILL NOT ACCEPT any application support materials via email without prior agreement.


STEP 3 - Sign in to begin your application

Note: Once you have started the process of applying online, you can hit "save" after each completed step in the application, sign out, and your application will remain saved as a draft. You can then return to your application any time before the deadline to continue working or to make changes by signing in with the username and password you created. Once you hit "submit," you will still be able to read, save and print your application, but you will not be able to make any changes.

For technical questions about the online application system, contact staff member Debra Twersky at 206 263.1610.

This funding opportunity is currently closed. We will reopen the application for this opportunity at least 6 weeks before the next deadline.

Scheduled Workshops

All applicants are required to attend a workshop prior to submitting your application. These free workshops provide you an opportunity to ask questions, understand specific guidelines, and be taken through a step-by-step review of the application process. No RSVP is required.


City Location Dates Time
Seattle 4Culture Offices July 21 + 28
August 4, 11, 18 + 25
September 1
Redmond Redmond Library conference room July 30 12-1:30
Burien Burien Library conference room August 6 12-1:30
Shoreline Shoreline Library small meeting room August 13 12-1:30
Renton Renton Highlands Library meeting room August 20 12-1:30

Eligibility & Step-by-Step Tutorial



start your application
get back into your application
upload documents and images
edit and submit your application

2015 - Building for Culture

Organization Project Summary Award
5th Avenue Theatre Association5th Avenue Theatre: New State-of-the-Art Sound System$217,645
A Contemporary Theatre (ACT)The Next ACT: Repairing and Restoring ACT’s Interiors and HVAC$60,000
Central Area Senior CenterGreen Dolphin, Entertaining Seniors and the Community$27,500
City of AuburnCreation of the Auburn Arts Center$200,000
City of Bellevue Parks and Community ServicesBellevue Youth Theatre Programming Opportunities and Code Improvements$75,000
City of BurienRepairs and Improvements for the Moshier Art Center$10,000
City of Duvall Cultural CommissionMobile Stage$40,000
City of Federal WayPerforming Arts & Event Center$2,000,000
City of Shoreline Parks, Recreation & Cultural ServicesShoreline Veterans Recognition Plaza$20,000
Coyote CentralHVAC for Coyote Central$17,500
Delridge Neighborhood Development AssociationElevate Youngstown$100,000
Duvall Foundation for the ArtsCommunity Arts Center (Thayer Barn)$420,000
El Centro de la RazaPlaza Roberto Maestas Multi-Cultural Community Center$222,000
Eritrean Association In Greater SeattleEritrean Community Kitchen$75,000
Evergreen City BalletECB Facility Improvements$5,000
Freehold Theatre Lab StudioNew home for Freehold$75,000
Friends of Jimi Hendrix ParkCentral Shelter at Jimi Hendrix Park$200,000
Friends of KEXPKEXP's New Home at Seattle Center$1,000,000
Historic SeattleCompleting the Rehabilitation of Washington Hall$986,000
Jack Straw ProductionsAccessible Bathrooms and HVAC Overhall$68,000
James and Janie Washington FoundationContinued Improvements to Physical Plant$30,000
KidsQuest Children's MuseumKidsQuest Children's Museum - Good to Grow Capital Campaign$1,000,000
Kirkland Arts CenterKAC Capital Improvements Project$75,000
Mini Mart City ParkMini Mart City Park$200,000
Music Works NorthwestMusic Works Facility Renovation Project$50,000
Northwest Film ForumFacility Renovation, phase III$50,000
On the BoardsOn the Boards HVAC Replacement$12,450
Pacific Northwest BalletPacific Northwest Ballet School at the Francia Russell Center Relocation/Construction Project$400,000
Performing Arts Center EastsideThe Campaign to Build Tateuchi Center$1,200,000
Pottery NorthwestRaise the Roof$11,300
Pratt Fine Arts CenterAn Arts-Based Community at Pratt Fine Arts Center$600,000
Puget Sound Access / Carco TheatreCarco Theatre Facilities Improvements$30,000
Richard Hugo HouseA permanent home for Hugo House$205,000
Seattle Art MuseumSAM Asian Art Museum Renovations$1,400,000
Seattle Children's TheatreRenovation of SCT's HVAC Systems$84,000
Seattle OperaPermanent Home for Seattle Opera$3,000,000
Seattle Repertory TheatrePONCHO Forum Renovation$200,000
Seattle Symphony OrchestraSoundbridge 2.0$200,000
Seattle Theatre GroupSeattle Theatre Group Capital Priority Project 2015$246,042
SIFFUpgrades to the Uptown$200,000
SouthEast Effective Development (SEED)Rainier Valley Radio / KVRU Studio Construction$115,000
Town Hall AssociationThe Historic Restoration of Town Hall Seattle$1,200,000
Vashon Allied ArtsVashon Center for the Arts$1,000,000
Velocity Dance CenterStudio/Theater Health and Safety Upgrades, plus Improved Box Office$27,000
Village TheatreVillage Theatre's New Production Warehouse$175,000
Voice of VashonCommunity Access Storefront Studio$22,750


Organization Project Summary Award
5th Avenue Theatre Association House Dimmer System $20,000
Arts Alive! Creative Space Remodel $30,000
ArtsWest 2013-14 Facilities Remodel $5,000
Bellevue Youth Theatre Fnd Bellevue Youth Theatre Facility $20,000
Boxley Music Fund Stage Renovation Project $13,000
Capitol Hill Housing Foundation 12th Avenue Arts $50,000
Cornish College of the ArtsCornish Playhouse at Sea Ctr$30,000
Federal Way Coalition Perf. ArtsNew Perf and Conf Ctr$20,000
Flying House ProductionsNew Performance Risers$30,000
Gage Academy of ArtFacility Improvements Project$30,000
Gay City Health ProjectCompletion of Auditorium $14,300
Historic SeattleLife/Safety/Access for WA Hall$5,000
Int.l Comm. Health ServicesNew Gallery at ICHS Shoreline$8,000
Jack Straw ProductionsAccessibility/Space Upgrades$15,000
KEXP, Friends ofKEXP's New Home Project$100,000
KidsQuest Children's MuseumNew home for KidsQuest$100,000
Kirkland Arts CenterSkylight Restoration$15,000
Mini Mart City ParkFacility/Park Demo $5,000
Music Center of the NorthWestFacility Renovations$25,000
New City TheaterRisers/Stairs Reconfiguration$6,700
Northwest Film ForumPhase Three: Marquee$15,000
On the BoardsImproving OtB's HVAC$5,000
Pacific Ballroom DanceSafety Improvement Campaign$10,000
Photo Center NorthwestExterior Renovation Project$20,000
Seattle Children's TheaterSCT Public Safety Renovations$8,500
Seattle Theatre GroupParamount Theatre Sound $30,000
Seattle Intl Film FestivalRenovate of Egyptian Theater$30,000
Theater SchmeaterNew facility for The Schmee$30,000
Theatre Puget SoundCtr Theatre Stage Floor $9,400
Unified OutreachRenovations to Ginome Ctr.$30,000
Village TheatreNew Gaudette Theatre Carpet $20,000


Organization Project Summary Award
A Contemporary Theatre (ACT) Emergency Theatre HVAC Upgrade $25,000
ArtsWest Gallery and Concessions Remodel $6,000
Bellevue Youth Theatre Foundation Bellevue Youth Theatre Facility $75,000
Capitol Hill Housing Foundation 12th Avenue Arts $75,000
City of Des Moines Park & Recreation Department Des Moines Beach Park Dining Hall $12,000
Friends of KEXP KEXP's New Home at Seattle Center $30,000
Frye Art Museum Frye Art Museum renovations $30,000
Gay City Health Project Gay City Performing Arts Auditorium $13,000
Highlands Council Lighting and AV Improvement Project $10,000
Historic Seattle Washington Hall Window Restoration $35,000
Institute for Community Leadership Multiuse Cultural Arts Facility $25,000
Intl Community Health Services Multi-media Gallery at ICHS Shoreline $20,000
Jack Straw Productions Jack Straw Accessibility Project $25,000
Kirkland Performance Center Expansion Dance Floor at KPC $15,000
Northwest Film Forum Phase II: Lobby & Marquee Remodels $50,000
Northwest Puppet Center Fantoccini Society $50,000
On the Boards Tuckpointing Behnke Center $26,500
Photographic Center Northwest Photographic Daylight Studio Space $20,000
Seattle Children's Theater Seattle Children's Theatre seating $40,000
Seattle Gilbert and Sullivan Society Basement Access & Seismic Improve $10,000
Seattle Theatre Group Moore Theatre Capital Improvements $26,500
Stone Soup Theatre Renovation audience areas $3,000
Stroum Jewish Community Center SJCC Performing Arts Auditorium $15,000
Taproot Theatre Company Hope from Ashes: Taproot Expansion $50,000
Unified Outreach Facility Renovation ADA Project $8,000
University Heights Center University Heights Seismic Retrofit $40,000


Organization Project Summary Award
Artspace Projects Inc Mt. Baker Station Lofts $75,000
Coyote Central Youth arts facilities at 23rd & Cherry $50,000
Historic Seattle Washington Hall Restoration $40,000
Bellevue Community College Foundation KBCS Cougar Mountain Project $27,000
On the Boards Floor & Carpet Replacement Project $27,000
Northwest Film Forum Theater Chairs Replacement Project $25,000
Photographic Center Northwest "Media Studio Space - Construction, Final Phase" $25,000
Seattle Musical Theatre Restrooms for Green Room & Remodel Beams Over Stage $22,000
Jack Straw Productions Jack Straw Accessibility Project $22,000
Evergreen City Ballet Custom Built Retractable Dance Studio Wall &
Steel Support Beam
Capitol Hill Housing Foundation 12 Avenue Arts $20,000
Small Faces Child Dev/Crown Hill Ctr Crown Hill Center Roof and Community Spaces $20,000
Dr. James Washington Jr. Foundation James Washington Collection & Studio Renovation $15,000
City of Auburn Parks and Recreation Department Auburn Les Gove Park Stage Cover $10,000
Vashon Allied Arts Vashon Center for the Arts $10,000
ArtEast Adding and improving artEAST's Education Space $8,000
Phinney Neighborhood Association Gallery Walls and Storage Space $6,000
Kirkland Arts Center Kiln Shed Roof and Gutter Replacement $5,500
Seattle Scenic Studios Safety and Seismic Mezzanine upgrade $4,000
Grand Illusion Cinema Air Conditioning Upgrade $3,150
Camlann Medieval Association Innkeeper's Cottage $1,000


Organization Project Summary Award
A Contemporary Theatre (ACT) HVAC/ventilation for shop $25,000
Bellevue Civic Theatre Theatre Building Purchase $50,000
City of SeaTac Pk and Recreation Band Shell at Angle Lake Park $25,000
Cornish College of the Arts Performing Arts Complex $50,000
Experience Music Project NW Passage Gallery Renovation $40,000
Bellevue Parks/Bell.Youth Theatre New facility for Bellevue Youth Theatre $75,000
Kirkland Arts Center Peter Kirk building renovation $18,000
Northwest Puppet Center First Level Renovations $62,000
On the Boards Sidewalk and Tree Replacement $19,160
Pacific Ballroom Dance Studio Renovation $30,000
Photographic Center Northwest Facilities Improvement, Phase II $22,750
Seattle Theatre Group Paramount Sign and Marquee $100,000
SuttonBeresCuller (Sutton, John) Mini Mart City Park $68,000
Vashon Allied Arts Vashon Arts Center $75,000
Velocity Dance Center A New Home for Velocity: Phase I $125,000
White River Valley Museum Mary Olson Farm arts improvements $15,000


Organization Project Summary Award
Arts in Motion Soundproofing Project $20,000
Burke Museum Association Art storage space in University Tower $30,000
Camlann Medieval Association Village Smithy $5,000
Cinema Seattle / SIFF Seattle International Film Festival Film Center $150,000
City of Enumclaw The Enumclaw Fieldhouse Project $80,000
Cornish College of the Arts Campaign for Cornish Phase 3 $100,000
Duwamish Tribal Services Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center $150,000
Japanese Garden Advisory Council Japanese Garden Gatehouse Entry Project $20,000
Kirkland Arts Center Ceramics Studio Renewal and Upgrade $15,000
Northwest African American Museum Northwest African American Museum $100,000
On the Boards Studio Theater Wiring Upgrade Project $9,462
Seattle Art Museum Seattle Asian Art Museum $25,000
Seattle Theatre Group New HVAC system at the Moore Theatre $50,000
Wing It Productions HVAC System for Historic University Theater $15,000

If you've been approved to receive 4Culture funding. What now? Facilities/Equipment funding requires different forms from our other programs. Here's what to expect:


4Culture will send a letter to notify you of your award.


In order to be awarded your funds, you must sign a contract with 4Culture. Essentially, 4Culture will contract with you to provide the arts/heritage/preservation services and public benefits described in your application.

In an effort to make our contract process simpler and reduce our impact on the environment, 4Culture will now provide your contract documents electronically.

Once your grant’s Scope of Service and Public Benefit have been developed, 4Culture prepares a contract for your review and signature. When it is ready, you will receive an e-mail from us through DocuSign. This email will contain a link to your documents, and you can review and electronically sign your contract. You will not be able to make changes to the contract, but if there is an error or you need to request changes, please contact Debra Twersky.

After you have electronically signed your contract, and have returned any requested forms (such as a completed W-9 Form), 4Culture will also electronically sign your contract. Then, DocuSign will automatically e-mail you a signed, digital copy of your contract to keep for your permanent records. You’ll be ready to move ahead with your project.

If we ask for a Certificate of Liability Insurance (COLI): You can request this Certificate from your agent, and it can be e-mailed, mailed, or faxed to 4Culture. We require "4Culture, Its Officers, Officials, Employees and Agents" be listed as Additional Insured on the certificate. Contact Debra Twersky if you have questions or problems with the Certificate of Liability Insurance.

Once you have submitted all required forms and we have signed the contract, your contract is active. We do not automatically send you a check. You must submit invoice(s) with required documentation in order to get paid.


Once you purchase equipment, or pay for labor and materials in a construction project, fill out the 4Culture Facilities/Equipment invoice form, attach documentation from your vendors or contractors showing that you have incurred the expense, and send it in to us via email, mail or fax to 206 296.8629. You may need to do this in phases as your project moves ahead. You will NOT fill out a Final Evaluation Form for funding through the Facilities/Equipment program.


Once all of the above steps have been completed, checks will be cut and mailed within two weeks after receipt of your invoice/documentation. Note: We prefer to send funds via EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer), so be sure to complete that section of the invoice if you want payment sent directly to your bank.


We want you to 4Culture/King County Lodging Tax support on brochures, press releases, programs, posters, flyers, advertisements, signage, etc. You can include this logo on project brochures, press releases, programs, posters, flyers, advertisements, signage, etc.

Best Practices

Let us know if we can provide you with any of the following
  • Sample press releases
  • Referrals for other people, places, organizations or services
  • Tips on contacting your legislators and King County Council members. Your elected officials should know that your organization makes an impact!

Stay in touch with us throughout this process

Let us know in advance when your work is happening, particularly if your project involves an event and send us any press or pictures. We'd love to keep track of your projects and look forward to featuring stories about you in our communications.