Long Live The Queen

Rachel, Molly and Arthur here! When we first took the reigns for Queen Ave Art Collective, we thought it would be a matter of getting a business license, signing the lease, turning on the lights and starting to host events.

But that wasn’t the case.

Not even a month after the announcement of the transition, a tragic fire at Ghost Ship, a DIY spot in Oakland, Calif., killed 36 people bringing an increasing amount of attention and scrutiny to the DIY scene across the country. Many local spots, like our friends at DRKMTTR, were shut down the Monday following the deadly fire with no other option but to go legit. All DIY spaces have been required to obtain a use and occupancy permit for general assembly in order to continue operation. To get that requires us getting our building up to standards set by Metro codes first.

Although Queen Ave was in the middle of its transitionary period, we knew we needed to meet with Mayor Megan Barry’s Music City Music Council to get some guidance on how to legitimize our new endeavor. With their help, we were able to apply for the necessary permit and have all but the two most important aspects checked off the list; a life safety analysis and a fire inspection.

You may be thinking: “Only two things left? Surely, they’ll be reopening this month!”

We wish that was the case, but we have some pretty big projects staring us down before we can get our Life Safety Analysis and, subsequently, our Fire Inspection. The biggest obstacles we face are getting our building up to ADA standards and adding bathrooms required for our level of occupancy.

And that’s where you come in.

Since officially taking over on Jan. 1, 2017, we’ve put our blood, sweat, and tears into the Queen because we believe it should be a space where the community can rally together and lift each other up. Most of our funding so far has been out of our own pockets, so we’re asking for your help to cover some of the renovation costs to get our doors open sooner. We're hoping the renovations listed below will help us reach an occupancy of 250!

PROJECT BREAKDOWN:

$4,000 - Necessary Bathroom Renovations

Before we can reopen,  we have to add in two new toilets (one of which must be handicap accessible) and another sink. Anyone who visited Queen Ave previously knows the current toilet situation is a single stall up on a high platform with a shower and a sink. We plan on converting that space into two single stall bathrooms atop a landing platform with a safety railing, building a third ADA-accessible stall lower to the ground with its own sink and an ADA-Compliant ramp, and adding some operational storage space and a service sink.

Costs associated with this project include:
> Building Materials (wood, drywall, nails, etc.)
> Bathroom Basics (toilets, sinks, lighting, doors, etc.)
> Professional Contractors (plumber, electrician, general contractor)
> Toilet Pump (required for lowered toilet)

$500 - Building the Performance Platform

Since Queen is losing a bit of assembly space with the necessary bathroom renovations, we decided to sacrifice what was slated to be our office space/merchandise zone to maximize the room available to our guests. Rather than keeping the performance area where it has been for years, we’re rotating the view to have the stage occupy the space where the room once stood. We anticipate this move helping to maximize space and bring about a better guest experience.

Costs associated with this project include:
> Building Materials (wood, plyboard, paint, etc.)

$500 - Increasing Safety with Double Doors

Not only are the current exterior doorways not ADA compliant, they’re also a safety hazard! Should an emergency ever arise, the inward-opening doors would cause a bottleneck, preventing individuals from leaving as quickly as possible. We can cover both problems with one fix… double doors. Outside of the smaller garage door, we plan on framing out double doors that open outward to maximize safety.

Costs associated with this project include:
> Building Materials
> ADA-Compliant Double Doors

$500 - Increasing Accessibility with Ramps

Once upon a time, the Queen played home to an auto mechanic’s shop, meaning a ramp already exists inside the building. But, of course, the grade is too high for ADA compliance. With our main entry point being shifted to the soon-to-be built double doors, this gives us the ability to move our doorman’s booth across the room and build a ramp from the lower area to the performance space near the exterior wall/old entrance. There’s also a possibility that we will need to build a ramp that leads out the back door.

Costs associated with this project include:
> Building Materials

$200 - Increasing Safety with a Firewall

Between our space and the Risology Club ’s space, our landlord keeps a small storage area. There’s a “hobbit door” on our back wall that is a potential fire hazard. In order to lessen the threat of a fire spreading through the building, we need to build a firewall and cover that access point.

Costs associated with this project include:
> Building Materials (fire wall, fire caulk, etc.)

$300 - Miscellaneous Projects

We have a few other items we’d like your help with accomplishing. Among our many ideas for how to maximize the Queen experience, we’re discussing rotating the wall to the front room inward to create a large, open space in the entryway. We would like to see this space become a retail area where bands playing that day can sell merchandise, where we can host monthly local art installations, and where you can get your Queen Ave swag. These funds can also help defray the costs we’ve already put into the building with paint and cleaning supplies.

WE NEED YOUR HELP!

Your contributions will jumpstart our projects and accelerate our timeline for opening. We appreciate the love and support of this wonderful community and appreciate your patience as we make our way through these steps to reopen Queen Ave.

As always, #longlivetheQueen,

Rachel, Molly & Arthur

Organizer

Molly Hornbuckle
Organizer
Nashville, TN

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