First African American Owned Bank Renovated

Art is the engine for change in one area of Omaha that has been neglected for years. A historic building is a recent project undergoing a major renovation for a promising future.

As North High School engineering teachers walked through the historic Carver Bank near 24th and Lake, they see a vision taking shape. The building is being renovated and will soon be a workspace for artists and a place for artists to show their work.

The teachers want their students to be part of the change. ”Our engineering students are very involved with community based projects. We work with UNO during their three days of service and pick a project that needs to be done that kids can do; and still gain some experiences and learn some leadership skills learn some teamwork activities," said teacher, Lee Kallstrom.

The old bank building will also feature a sandwich shop, operated by Big Mama's Kitchen and Catering.

“I’m excited about being there. I can remember as a kid how vibrant 24th street was and there were many, many shops and stores down in that area. I’m glad to be there," said owner, Patricia Barron.

The Bemis Center says the bank building will support North Omaha artists and they are excited about being a part of North Omaha’s rebirth.

The Carver Bank sat empty for years, now the city's first African American owned bank will once again be a vital part of the community

The Bemis Art Center in the Carver Bank should be complete by November. Organizers say it cost about $60,000 to renovate the building.

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