CRESTVIEW — A new historic and cultural center could be in Crestview’s future.
The Community Redevelopment Agency unanimously agreed at its May 14 meeting to move forward with a grant application to restore the Bush House at the corner of South Wilson Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in downtown Crestview. The historical $50,000-grant requires the CRA match the funds.
CRA Director Alisa Burleson brought the grant proposal before the board with the idea that the site could be used as a historic museum and cultural center in the future. The building currently houses Elder Services of Okaloosa County, which would share the building under the proposed plan.
Burleson envisions “a place where Crestview history is actually seen instead of just talked about.”
According to Burleson, the museum would display items from Crestview’s history, many of which are currently housed at the Baker Block Museum. Burleson is working with the museum’s director, Ann Spann, on ideas for the Crestview museum.
The site would also serve as a cultural center that could host travelling art and history displays. Burleson said it could also put on special cultural exhibits for things like Black History Month and Crestview’s sister city program.
The grant would be for funding the planning phases of the project. If successful, the board could then apply for a larger grant next year to cover the cost of repairing and refurbishing the building.
Burleson said there are a number of issues with the building, which is currently maintained by the city’s public works department, including foundation problems and leaks. An estimate received by the CRA put the total cost of repair at between $100,000 and $300,000.
The CRA will now draw up a proposal for the grant, which will be awarded June 30.