Dance instructor turns old warehouse into a studio New location given Oct. 1 opening date

September 06, 1992|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

WESTMINSTER -- Sometimes what looks like a streak of bad luck can be a portent of greater things.

At least that's what Patty Neivert has found. She will be moving her dance studio from Winchester Exchange to the former Beacon Industries warehouse on Oct. 1.

The mall's owners told her a dance studio was incompatible with the businesses that were moving in around her, Ms. Neivert said. The management offered her another location within the building. But the cost of sound-proofing the new space would've resulted in a higher rent that was more than her budget would allow.

"I was shocked and very surprised when [Winchester's owners] told me about Memorial Day that they needed me to move," Ms. Neivert said. "I wasn't in there a year yet, and I had fixed it up so cute."

Robert Max, one of the mall's owners, said, "It was going to be difficult for [Ms. Neivert and her students] to stay here. They needed more space, and to provide that for them we needed to find a place that would be sound-insulated to other tenants."

Beginning in June, Ms. Neivert began searching for a new location, a journey that led her to the unimproved warehouse on Railroad Avenue, not far from her current studio.

"For a while, I almost thought I was going to close my doors," she said. "I was looking all over the county for a large space with wood floor like a barn or a warehouse."

What she finally found was ideal, she said. With 4,000 square feet -- four times her current space -- she will build studios, each larger than her current dance area, plus dressing rooms for faculty and students, an office and a reception area.

What thrills her the most is the artistic look she will be able to create. After refinishing the oak floors and taking out one of the lofts to make an 18-foot ceiling, Ms. Neivert said, she will have one of the most competitive studios in the area.

"Outside of college facilities, I don't know of anything quite this size," she said. "And even college facilities are a little institutional-looking. I want to take this warehouse and turn it into something adorable."

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