Siler Yard: Arts + Creativity Center

Space for Creativity to Work

Laura Zabel
Scott Kratz

The Siler Yard: Arts+Creativity Center began in 2012 when Creative Santa Fe engaged with Artspace to investigate the possibility of an affordable live/work rental project in Santa Fe. The Artspace Market Study paved the way for an analysis of potential sites for Siler Yard, which identified a portion of the 53 acres of city-owned land near 1218 Siler Road as the best fit. In 2013 New Mexico Inter-Faith Housing joined the project team to serve as the lead developer and applicant for affordable housing development funding. In August of 2015 the project was awarded a prestigious “Our Town” planning grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. In April of 2016 the City of Santa Fe agreed to donate five acres of land to the project on Siler Road.

Siler Yard is an innovative nonprofit driven project working at the intersection of urgent affordable housing and economic development needs in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The project will combine highly affordable live/work rental housing co-located with a community makerspace operated by MAKE Santa Fe, all amplified through on-site resources for economic development and support. Siler Yard will be located on a city-donated redevelopment site on Siler Road. This rapidly transitioning neighborhood has long housed craftsperson studios, DIY venues, and a wide range of trades and local businesses. The goal of the project is to preserve low-cost living and working space in a gentrifying neighborhood while serving lower-income creative entrepreneurs and their families. This type of live/work affordable rental housing has never before been developed in New Mexico.

We are thrilled to announce that this project was recently awarded $10.4 million in low income housing tax credits from the State of New Mexico, and will be moving forward to construction! The project is aiming to break ground in spring 2020, with the first units coming available in Winter 2021 and full buildout of the housing that following summer. While the Siler Yard project was Creative Santa Fe’s concept that originated eight years ago, the project developer is New Mexico Interfaith Housing. For more information and answers to commonly asked questions about Siler Yard, please visit

In fall 2017, CBRE conducted a multi-family housing survey for Santa Fe, New Mexico and noted that the city “may well be the tightest rental market in the country.” This report showed a rental vacancy rate of just 2.7 % functionally 100 % occupancy. The same report indicates that market-rate rental housing costs had increased by more than 30 % in the prior three years.

Siler Yard will be a mixed-income community serving a majority low and very low-income individuals and families. By providing such low-cost living and working space together, we hope to create a platform for creative entrepreneurs to expand and grow their careers and businesses and become more economically self-sufficient.

Siler Yard was a recipient of the prestigious National Endowment for the Arts “Our Town” planning grant, and by the time of construction will have invested more than $300,000 in connecting with the community around architectural design, programming and amenities for the project. The architectural design of the project is the result of a design input process that engaged with more than 35 creatives who represent the constituencies we hope to serve, in particular: lower income Hispanic, Native American and non-binary artists of color.

Siler Yard is designed to be cutting-edge water and energy efficient. A net-zero energy solar array will generate all the power needed to sustain the residential housing with their highly efficient appliances and HVAC systems. Lowest water use fixtures and innovative stormwater harvesting combined with sustainable landscaping will ensure minimal site water consumption.

Please visit for more details on this project





"Affordable housing has always been an important component of every vital and vibrant city, and never more so than in times of great income disparity like the present. Envisioning, planning, creating, and manifesting viable solutions, like the Siler Yard Affordable Artist Housing Project, are absolutely and fundamentally essential if we as a city are to honor our commitment to maintain the exciting blend of humanity that we so cherish and celebrate in our city of Santa Fe."
-~ Michael Freed, artist, founder of Offroad Productions
"For over a thousand years, this region has been home to a continuum of creativity. For the vast majority of this time, affordable housing was part of the natural equilibrium of life. Homes were pulled up out of the earth - made and changed to suit evolving needs and technologies. Today, Santa Fe continues as a cultural crossroads and a hub of making, with the Siler Road area as its epicenter, yet a dramatic and well-documented housing shortage threatens the ability for artists and creative professionals to remain in this beautiful place. Affordable housing in Santa Fe has never been more important. This project will help to stem the crisis by boldly declaring that the creative community is essential to our collective future.
-- Shawn Evans, Principal, Atkin Olshin Schade Architects, lead designers of the Siler Yard project
"Siler Yard is VITAL in starting a movement of affordable housing for the creative's and residents in Santa Fe. It’s central location, affordable rents, and artists focused amenities will only enhance Santa Fe's reputation as a world class art center."
--Steve Brisk