Forget the high-dollar views from the balconies of downtown’s new, expensive condos. Artist and designer Erin Lorenzen’s loft on the top floor of the KramerSchool may be the coolest apartment in downtown. It’s got ceilings that are at least 20 feet high, a huge skylight over the central common area, and a sloped wall. It’s not something anyone would ever set out to build, but it’s an amazing space.
Lorenzen, 27, grew up in Stifft Station and Hillcrest. Except for two years she spent in Buenos Aires, she hadn’t lived outside those neighborhoods until she moved into the Kramer building a year ago. She shares the apartment with two roommates, and her works in progress — visual art pieces and clothing — cover much of the walls.
The KramerSchool was redeveloped into apartments in 1997 with the aim of providing a community for local artists and their families. Artwork decorates every hallway and common space, but residents don’t have to be artists anymore. The building was developed as affordable housing, though, so new residents must meet income requirements to get in. The smallest apartments start at $490, and all utilities are included.
<module>Lorenzen likes being near the River Market and just a block away from the ArkansasArtsCenter, where she teaches a course.
“I’ve seen every show since I’ve been here,” she said.
But she misses AllsoppPark, and being able to walk home after running on the trails there. And she wishes downtown wasn’t so spread out.
“That’s one thing I miss about living in a big city — you walk downstairs, and everything’s right there.”