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The Waterworks

There is no entrance to The Waterworks from San Marco Ave. Please enter through the St. Johns Library Main Branch parking lot.

Built in 1898, the Waterworks was once the pumping station for the City’s first water utility during the Flagler Era, a period dating from the arrival of developer Henry Flagler in St. Augustine until his death in 1913. It remained in service until 1927 when a new water plant opened in 1927 on West King Street.

The 1928 conversion of the waterworks to a community center was one of the earliest adaptive use projects in the history of St. Augustine. It became the Little Theatre of St. Augustine, then a home for the St. Augustine Arts Club, and later the St. Augustine Garden Club. Site improvements included converting the aerating basin to a wading pool for children and constructing a low coquina concrete wall along the San Marco side of the property.

The brick building was closed in 2005 out of safety concerns. Since then the city has secured grant funding to have the building stabilized and then continue with its restoration. The Waterworks was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2014 for local level significance for its association with Jo Conn Guild, a nationally significant engineer, and F.A. Hollingsworth, one of St. Augustine’s most prominent architects.

In 2022, the St. Johns Cultural Council began leasing from the City of St. Augustine to dramatically increase access to arts, culture, and heritage programming for our residents, and provide much-needed space for St. Augustine-based organizations to meet and host community events.

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