SLC launches ‘The Blocks’ initiative to promote arts and culture downtown

Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski at a news conference on July 11, 2018. (FOX 13 file image)

SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake City and County leaders and members of the city’s Downtown Alliance announced the branding for the city’s new “cultural core” initiative Wednesday.

The initiative, called “The Blocks,” “will help promote and package artistic experiences to an increasingly diverse group of residents and visitors,” a news release from Downtown Alliance said.

“The Blocks is home to a broad range of world-class arts and cultural programming, all located within a 40-block neighborhood area with its wide variety of venues, audiences and non-stop creative energy,” said Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski. “This is a game-changer for downtown Salt Lake.”

Jason Mathis, Executive Director of Salt Lake City’s Downtown Alliance, said the 40-block area Biskupski mentioned is between North Temple and 400 S, and between 400 E and 600 W.

“It’s a big area. It includes The Gateway, it includes City Creek. Obviously, Abravanel Hall, Capitol Theatre, Rose Wagner Performing Arts Center. Even things like Temple Square and off-Broadway cinemas are all part of this arts district in downtown Salt Lake City,” Mathis said.

Mathis said the city and county will spend about $500,000 annually to promote The Blocks.

“We won’t be competing with existing arts organizations and we won’t be funding a lot of existing arts organizations. Our goal is really to help enhance what they’re already doing,” Mathis explained.

The city is hosting the Downtown SLC Block Party on Friday night.  Visit theblocksslc.com for more information on that party and other events.