The Pomona Loft Scene
Live/Work Lofts are incubators that generate entrepreneurial activity. They give the community eyes on the street, help to visually activate the buildings and sidewalks, and provide a built-in customer base for downtown businesses.
According to the Live/Work enabling ordinance that was established in 1978, cities can amend their building codes to develop artist lofts with a separate set of standards that are customized by each individual city. Pomona was one of the first small cities in California to adopt this ordinance, and it now has the largest cluster of arts lofts east of Downtown Los Angeles.
The Live/Work element in the art lofts is critical: this allows artists to live in no more than 50% of their loft, leaving the remainder of the space for their work. Artists who rent these lofts must have a business license – which facilitates entrepreneurial pursuits, and often the artwork created in these lofts turns into public art, loft tours, and thriving arts-related businesses.