For a city to have a thriving arts scene
From Peak California:
For a city to have a thriving arts scene, you need some combination of:
1. Families or nightlife, both of which produce demand for reasonably educated workers who work non-traditional or variable-schedule jobs, either as babysitters or bartenders.
2. Cheap neighborhoods that aren’t unsafe. My current neighborhood, Williamsburg, fit this role ten years ago.
3. Upside, either in the form of selling out or marrying someone with a boring but lucrative job.