James J. Hill Center to be arts venue

17 Jun 2021


The new owner of the James J. Hill Center’s historic building in downtown St. Paul said Thursday that he plans to make “significant” improvements to the shuttered venue and reuse it as an arts and cultural center.

Developer Peter Remes of Minneapolis-based First & First said the 43,776-square-foot building will host performances, parties, weddings, corporate events, book launches and other events after the improvements are complete.

“I always thought it was a beautiful building in the community,” said Remes, who purchased the building this week.

The building, at 80 W. Fourth St., houses a reference library and hosted events before closing to the public in 2019. At the time, the James J. Hill Center’s board of directors said it was “challenged” to find a “financial model” to deal with the building’s operating costs and “necessary capital investments.”

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