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"We are building a stage for our community's future."

1.    The proposed Performing Arts Center is Affordable.
The Board of Directors for the proposed Performing Arts Center recently completed a
re-design and brought down the construction cost of the facility with the assistance of Gilchrist Ross Crowe, local architects. The facility is now at $52 million with a 1,700 fixed-seat performance venue, multi-purpose public spaces, stage support and administrative space.  (The construction cost is down from the estimate in 2011 of $89 million.)  Our request from sales tax dollars to build the Performing Arts Center is only $30 million.  This is less than the right- away (not construction cost) for widening some sections of Capital Circle. 

2.    The proposed Performing Arts Center is Sustainable.
James Baudoin, an FSU Grad in theater management, and the project manager for several Performing Arts Centers during his 35-year career wrote a Sustainability Study that demonstrates our proposed Performing Arts Center can be sustainable from the outset, balancing expenses with a realistic mix of earned and unearned revenues.  Programming assumptions are based on the best available information regarding future use by local performing arts organizations and a wide range of community and professional activities.  A majority of revenue (58%) and expense (52%) will come from programming the Performing Arts Center will present itself:  Broadway Tours and Family & Celebrity Artists.  The current 1% bed tax that has been committed to the Performing Arts Center is sufficient to fund on-going operation with no advalorem taxes committed.  The budget also provides for a $250,000 operating reserve as part of the budget.

3.    We have completed a preliminary site plan design
We have visuals to show you! These artistic renderings are meant to convey the possible look and feel for the future facility.  They are exciting and inspiring but they are preliminary and will evolve during the final design process.  A final design will not begin until after the Sales Tax vote and the time line for construction has been set.  It will take architects approximately a year to complete, in conjunction with contractors and site work professionals.

4.    The Performing Arts Facility will create significant economic benefits.
Glenn Robertson, a highly respected economist and former Director of Budgeting and Finance for Governors Graham, Mixson and Martinez conducted an Economic Impact Study comparing us to Performing Arts Centers around the country. 

It will add New jobs: One time impact during construction can = 1,200+ jobs and on-going jobs to operate the Center = a range of 213 to 398 jobs.

It will increase citizen incomes and community sales:  A new Performing Arts Center created $3.9 million in Paducah, Kentucky and $9.2 million dollars in Omaha, Nebraska.

It will enhance tourism:  The Roberston Study demonstrates that it will attract out-of-town visitors to our community and increase community sales.  The Performing Arts Center in Paducah, KY has over 40% of its visitors coming from over 50 miles away to see events.  It will give other visitors to Tallahassee a reason to extend their stay by providing them something exciting to do while they are here.  It will retain local dollars currently leaving town as our citizens go to other cities to see cultural events or entertainers.

It will stimulate economic development over many years:  Performing Arts Centers are a catalyst for development and redevelopment of nearby properties.  They create demand for restaurants, hotels, and other commercial activities as a result of the foot traffic they generate.  Gains in property tax receipts from downtown properties in Madison, Wisconsin increased by $18.9 million annually.

It will create an active and vibrant downtown:  Increased activity will create the long sought after 18-hour downtown the City has tried to create.  This in turn creates a reason to live and work downtown.  Condos in downtown Madison, Wisconsin grew in taxable value by over $500 million and downtown properties paying taxes grew from 2,425 to 5,433 over 10 years.

It will generate needed revenue for schools and public services: Bottom line - a Performing Arts Center contributes to a community’s economic vitality.

5.    Who is this Performing Arts Center for?
Everyone.  It is all about people and the experience they will have in a building that reaches out to the entire community.  A full spectrum of entertainment will be featured.  (See the potential listings in the notebook.)

6.    The Performing Arts Center enjoys significant support.
More than 2,000 people have signed on as Members who are in favor of seeing a Performing Arts Center in Tallahassee’s future.   To see the list, go to:  www.theFLCenter.org.

7.    Why are we building it, when we have Ruby Diamond?
At the March 14th Sales Tax Committee meeting Don Gibson, Dean of the FSU College of Music and the individual who lead the renovation at Ruby Diamond spoke in favor of the Performing Arts Center.  He indicated that Ruby Diamond is at capacity with no possibility of increased availability for community performing arts groups.  Simply put, Ruby Diamond is not a venue that belongs to the community.

8.    Where will the Performing Arts Center be built?
We have an option on the “Johns Site”, an empty lot on Gaines Street between Bronough and Duval.  The site is perfect to serve as a cultural and community catalyst for the Gaines Street Cultural District that is developing between Cascades Park and College Town.  (There is a Map under the “Presentation” tab)

9.    What about the name, “The Florida Center”?
The ultimate name for the Performing Arts Center is still to be determined.  A future donor may make a large enough donation with “naming rights” for the future Center.   “The Florida Center for Performing Arts and Education” is the name of the non-profit, 501(c)3 corporation that is building support for the proposed Performing Arts Center, at the direction of our City and County Commissions.