History of the Arts Center Building

The Arts Center Building was originally known as the Christ Episcopal Church.  The site of the Christ Episcopal Church was purchased from the First Baptist Church for $1000 and the building was consecrated on June 19, 1887.  Gothic in design, the two-story brick edifice has a steep roof with four gables and a steeple tower.  A flight of massive stone steps leads up from the avenue to a medieval doorway.  The doorway contains stained-glass panels in the arched double-leaf doors.

From the anteroom two doors open into the square-shaped area that was used for the sanctuary.  Four large stained-glass windows form the focus of the interior, each of them imported from Europe and nationally famous.  The value of the windows behind the alter is estimated to be over $250,000.  A variety of woods are used within the building, which include oak panels in the ceiling, cherry wainscoting and walnut door frames. 

In the fall of 1990, the Board of Directors purchased the Episcopal Church and named the facility the Richmond Area Arts Center.  Renovations were made to make the building safe and accessible, while preserving its historic qualities.


The Richmond Area Arts Center is located at 399 West Water Street, and can be located using these directions.

From I-75 North
Take exit 90A for US-25 S/US-421 S toward Richmond/Irvine
Merge onto US-25/US-421 S/Lexington Rd
Turn right to continue to follow US-25 BUS S
Turn right onto S 3rd St
Take the 1st right onto W Water St.
The Arts Center will be on the right.

From I-75 South
Take Exit 87
Turn right onto Eastern Bypass
Turn left onto Lancaster Ave and follow it
Turn right onto W. Water St.
The Arts Center will be on the right.