agreed that the performing arts are important to the economic development and well-being of the Gulf Coast community, contributing to jobs, tourism, and retail operations.
would attend the Performing Arts Center more often if there were more programming options.
believe that it is important for communities to provide cultural learning opportunities for children and families.
say that the performing arts should be open and accessible to all people regardless of socioeconomic status, and it is important that underserved communities gain access to the performing arts.
To fulfill this mission, the project will…
From first conception to community approval, so much has been accomplished on our journey. Here is a glimpse into the milestone moments on the quest to bring the Sarasota Performing Arts Center to life.
As our history grows, so does the Foundation vision.
Ali and Gloria Bahaj
David and Myrna Band
Gerald and Sondra Biller
Boar’s Head Provisions Co., Inc.
Community Foundation of Sarasota County
Herta Cuneo †
Phil and Julie Delaney
Brian and Caroline Ellerson
Gulf Coast Community Foundation
Holmes Family Fund
Donna and David Koffman
Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine
Hon. Jacqueline Lewis
Ed and Susan Maier
Brenda and Dave Maraman
Martella Family Foundation
William and Elaine McClure
Jonathan and Michelle Mitchell, Edward D. and Anna Mitchell Family Foundation
Richard and Pamela Mones
Karl and Ricky Newkirk
Peter and Joanne Powers
Iris and Marty Rappaport
Michael Saunders and Company
Joel and Diane Schleicher
Paul Seed, StarTech.com
Jim and Susan Travers
Williams Parker Attorneys at Law
Susan and Charles Wilson
The following organizations have signed a declaration of support to endorse the vision of Sarasota Performing Arts Center, to create a state-of-the-art performing arts center that will be a cultural icon, a civic asset, and a preeminent destination for the performing arts in the nation by offering extraordinary cultural and educational experiences that open a world of new possibilities for all.
Thank you for connecting culture and community, together.
Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County
The Bay Park Conservancy
Brain Health Initiative
Choral Artists of Sarasota
Community Foundation of Sarasota County
Downtown Sarasota Condominium Association
Early Learning Coalition of Sarasota
Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota
Education Foundation of Sarasota County
Embracing Our Differences
The Glasser Schoenbaum Human Services Center
Laurel Civic Association
Longboat Key Chamber of Commerce
Manatee County Schools
Marie Selby Botanical Gardens
Perlman Music Program
Suncoast Black Arts Collaborative
Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall
Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
The city’s Climate Adaptation Plan identified the 50-year-old Hall as the city’s most vulnerable structure, sitting in a high-risk flood zone. FEMA compliance codes preclude renovations of the Hall as structural modifications exceed more than 50% of the building’s value. Therefore, a new state-of-the-art center, including technological advances and multiple performance spaces, will be built to provide a competitive advantage to attract world-class artists and serve the community and beyond year-round.
The Hall is owned and operated by the city of Sarasota; the city is establishing a blue-ribbon commission to determine the path forward for the existing Hall.
The existing Hall was built on the bay fostering a relationship with the performing arts and the city. To continue with that cultural history and create a new world-class performing arts center, this site, at the heart of Sarasota’s definitive Bay Park Redevelopment, is the best home for the new Sarasota Performing Arts Center.
A parking study commissioned by the city and conducted by Tindale Oliver recommended the need for 1,000 parking spaces to serve the future performing arts center. The Foundation is collaborating with the City and the Bay Park Conservancy to identify a variety of ways to meet this need through a combination of surface parking spaces within the Bay Park, a limited number of spaces beneath the performing arts center, and additional offsite parking locations within walking distance. Shuttle services would be provided to the performing arts center from any offsite parking areas during events and performances. In addition, valet parking and dedicated ride/share services will be available at the new performing arts center.
We are working on requesting proposals from architects to design the performing arts center. Our hope is to have the architect selected by summer 2022. Then there is 24 months of design, followed by 30 months of construction. If fundraising stays on track, we can cut the ribbon on a new performing arts center by the end of 2026.
The Foundation has conducted two Community Engagement Surveys in 2018 and 2020 to gauge the public’s opinion and desires for the future performing arts center. Over 18,000 community members have responded, and their aspirations have shaped our strategic plan.
Additional opportunities will be offered throughout the architect selection process regarding contemporary, sustainable design primed for international acclaim.
Implementation of world-class technological advancements to provide first-rate accommodations for a variety of performance styles, including Broadway, orchestral, choral, dance, movement, and more.
Incorporation of sustainable practices into the design, construction, and maintenance of the new performing arts center.
The new performing arts center will be funded both through private philanthropy, which the Foundation will be responsible for, and public funding, including local, state and federal appropriations.
Current projections of the total project cost are $300-$350 million, this takes into account inflation and cost of materials for 3-5 years.
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