How Arts Can Transform a Region
From day one, Kim Ayres has been at the center of Millville’s art renaissance. As the city’s planning director, she led the creation of its Glasstown Arts District in 1999, then solicited Cumberland County College (CCCNJ) to locate its arts school, Clay College, on its main thoroughfare. In an area hungry for opportunity, Glasstown and Clay College both proved successful. But by 2015, the district had plateaued and the school had outgrown its space.
Now at CCCNJ, Kim joined an array of cross-sector partners in proposing a bold solution: the Cumberland County College Arts and Innovation Center. The plan quadrupled Clay College’s space, with more classrooms and computer labs to expand courses, professional studios and gallery space for making and displaying art and a new community space. It would also relocate the school to the heart of Glasstown.