About

ABOUT

relive

NOTO HISTORY

1800s

The expansion of the Union Pacific railroad into North Topeka in the mid-1800s would, for much of the 19th century, be the industrial heart of the Kansas capital. This excluded, of course, the mammoth Santa Fe shops just across the river. In April 1867, southside Topeka annexed Eugene, a small town founded a few years prior by Louis Laurent and William Curtis, the grandfather of Charles Curtis, a native North Topekan who became vice president under President Hoover. At the time, the evenly-matched population and economy of north and south Topeka resulted in a tug-of-war for industry and commerce throughout the remainder of the 1800s.

1900s

The 800 and 900 blocks of North Kansas Avenue – known during the 1940s and early 1950s as the North Topeka business district – was a vibrant retail and service center. It was along this stretch where a grocery store, movie theater, hardware store, and auto repair shop once sat. Families would set aside special days to head to town just to visit North Topeka.

Still, the area has witnessed its hardships. When the historic Kansas River flood of 1951 ravished North Topeka’s downtown, many businesses simply could not recover. Then again in 1965, the collapse of the Kansas Avenue bridge, which connected North Kansas Avenue to South Kansas Avenue, impacted many businesses north of the bridge. Finally, when a new bridge was built one block east, it seemed like the final downfall of what was a buzzing retail and service area.  Various businesses and the Topeka Rescue Mission remained, but the district increasingly became an area characterized by grunge and crime.

2000s

In the early 2010s, through the Heartland Visioning process, the Topeka community requested an “Arts district” in a survey. The historic North Topeka downtown was suggested as the location for the proposed arts district. Investors purchased many of the historic buildings to begin the revitalization. The area, dubbed the NOTO Arts & Entertainment District, welcomed three businesses in 2011, 12 businesses in 2012 and has since continued to grow to include art galleries, antique and home décor shops, restaurants and bars, all locally owned and operated. Included is the NOTO Arts Center, which serves as the district office as well as an art gallery or a venue for classes and events.

The arts scene is alive and well in the NOTO Arts & Entertainment District, with over 3,000 people visiting every month for the ARTSConnect First Friday Artwalk. Other events held throughout the year attract visitors to NOTO’s murals, visiting artists, and more!

relive

NOTO HISTORY

1800s

 

The expansion of the Union Pacific railroad into North Topeka in the mid-1800s would, for much of the 19th century, be the industrial heart of the Kansas capital. This excluded, of course, the mammoth Santa Fe shops just across the river. In April 1867, southside Topeka annexed Eugene, a small town founded a few years prior by Louis Laurent and William Curtis, the grandfather of Charles Curtis, a native North Topekan who became vice president under President Hoover. At the time, the evenly-matched population and economy of north and south Topeka resulted in a tug-of-war for industry and commerce throughout the remainder of the 1800s.

1900s

 

The 800 and 900 blocks of North Kansas Avenue – known during the 1940s and early 1950s as the North Topeka business district – was a vibrant retail and service center. It was along this stretch where a grocery store, movie theater, hardware store, and auto repair shop once sat. Families would set aside special days to head to town just to visit North Topeka.

Still, the area has witnessed its hardships. When the historic Kansas River flood of 1951 ravished North Topeka’s downtown, many businesses simply could not recover. Then again in 1965, the collapse of the Kansas Avenue bridge, which connected North Kansas Avenue to South Kansas Avenue, impacted many businesses north of the bridge. Finally, when a new bridge was built one block east, it seemed like the final downfall of what was a buzzing retail and service area.  Various businesses and the Topeka Rescue Mission remained, but the district increasingly became an area characterized by grunge and crime.

2000s

 

In the early 2010s, through the Heartland Visioning process, the Topeka community requested an “Arts district” in a survey. The historic North Topeka downtown was suggested as the location for the proposed arts district. Investors purchased many of the historic buildings to begin the revitalization. The area, dubbed the NOTO Arts & Entertainment District, welcomed three businesses in 2011, 12 businesses in 2012 and has since continued to grow to include art galleries, antique and home décor shops, restaurants and bars, all locally owned and operated. Included is the NOTO Arts Center, which serves as the district office as well as an art gallery or a venue for classes and events.

The arts scene is alive and well in the NOTO Arts & Entertainment District, with over 3,000 people visiting every month for the ARTSConnect First Friday Artwalk. Other events held throughout the year attract visitors to NOTO’s murals, visiting artists, and more!

behind the

NOTO ORGANIZATION

NOTO Sign

The NOTO Arts & Entertainment District is a non-profit organization that supports and advocates for the district. It is managed by an executive director and is supported by a board of directors from within the district as well as the broader community.

behind the

NOTO ORGANIZATION

NOTO Sign

The NOTO Arts & Entertainment District is a non-profit organization that supports and advocates for the district. It is managed by an executive director and is supported by a board of directors from within the district as well as the broader community.

visit the

NOTO ARTS CENTER

The historic NOTO Arts Center was originally built as a federal post office in 1938. Starting in the early 1980’s the building was used by various businesses until it was purchased and donated by Stan and Jody Teeter in 2014 to serve as an arts center and as the administrative home for the NOTO Arts and Entertainment District. With a classic revival architectural style, the building is an art piece itself with detailed window arches and a glass fanlight window over the entry.

visit the

NOTO ARTS CENTER

The historic NOTO Arts Center was originally built as a federal post office in 1938. Starting in the early 1980’s the building was used by various businesses until it was purchased and donated by Stan and Jody Teeter in 2014 to serve as an arts center and as the administrative home for the NOTO Arts and Entertainment District. With a classic revival architectural style, the building is an art piece itself with detailed window arches and a glass fanlight window over the entry.

media mentions of 

NOTO ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT

December 1, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 1, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 12, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 15, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 15, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 29, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

February 1, 2019 Topeka Capital Journal

February 16, 2019 Topeka Capital Journal

media mentions of 

NOTO 
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT

December 1, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 1, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 12, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 15, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 15, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

December 29, 2018 Topeka Capital Journal

February 1, 2019 Topeka Capital Journal

February 16, 2019 Topeka Capital Journal