Paducah, Kentucky is the model for this 8 year old program in Oil City to offer low cost mortgage loans to artists. 32 have moved in so far with 3 more in the process.
The town is a treasure trove off great architecture dating from its days as an oil boom town. Pennzoil, Quaker State and no less than Standard Oil were really born here. Many buildings sat empty in later years.
"A major selling point is the fact that Oil City is uniquely beautiful. It's nestled between hills and bisected by a river. All around town are Victorian mansions built for oil magnates of days past.
Maybe most importantly? Real estate prices in Oil City are really, really low. As in, you can buy a house for $30,000 dollars.
Artists have to apply for the program. If approved, Wheeler connects the artist with a realtor and a local bank.
In the eight years the program has been going, 32 artists have moved to the area from places like Boston, Chicago, and LA. And three more are in the process of moving."For a while, Johnstown had a program like this but the money ran out.
See images and listen to the story: Here
I actually never heard of this. The city should consider developing a temporary artist residency program so artists can see the town.