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March 18, 2024, 12:05 pm

City of Victoria Purchases Downtown Live Music Hub

City of Victoria
VICTORIA -  The City of Victoria has purchased the building and business assets at 751-753 View Street – home to Hermann’s Jazz Club and the View Street Social – to support Victoria’s live music industry by retaining this downtown iconic performance hub.

“This purchase demonstrates Council’s commitment to preserving and investing in music spaces downtown as reflected in our 2023-2026 Strategic Plan,” said Mayor Marianne Alto. “This venue’s importance was also identified during development of the Victoria Music Strategy, and I hope it will continue to contribute to Victoria’s vibrant arts and culture scene for years to come.” 

The building’s tenant, the Arts on View Society, which has been operating the building’s live music venues, gave notice to the previous owner that they will not continue to lease and operate the upper floor (Hermann’s Upstairs Lounge) after March 31. The Society will continue to focus on their ground floor business operations, Hermann’s Jazz Club and the View Street Social.
 
“The Arts on View Society has had great support from City of Victoria staff and Council since our incorporation,” said Clay Barber, Executive Director of the Arts on View Society. “The City’s commitment to our vision – to create and sustain a performing arts centre in downtown Victoria – could not have been better expressed than their recent purchase of the building in which we operate the iconic Hermann’s Jazz Club. We applaud the City’s vision and support of the arts and look forward to a long and prosperous relationship.”

Moving forward, the City will work with the Arts on View Society and any future tenants to identify opportunities to ensure the long-term success of this iconic asset. An immediate priority for the City is finding a new commercial tenant for the second floor of this downtown music hub. 

The $3.95 million purchase was funded by the City’s Land Sale Reserve. Proceeds from the sale of City land fund this Reserve, which can only be used for land acquisitions and capital expenditures related to land.

“This strategic acquisition allows the City to play an important role in the preservation of space for live music, while also diversifying the organization’s revenue streams and real estate portfolio,” said Thomas Soulliere, Deputy City Manager. 

The purchase aligns with the City’s 2023-2026 Strategic Plan, which prioritizes investing in artistic, theatrical and music spaces and/or using City-owned property to support the goals of the Create Victoria Arts and Culture Master Plan and the Victoria Music Strategy. The acquisition also aligns with the City’s OUR DWTN program to invest in the downtown core. 
 

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