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Task Force: Build A New Performing Arts Theater

City of Sacramento

Kauffman Center for Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri.

City of Sacramento

A task force has identified three design ideas and three possible sites for a new performing arts center in the City of Sacramento.

The task force ranked five sites based on economic development, ease of acquisition, parking, retail proximity, public open space, iconic visibility, public transit, urban planning, freeway access, hotel proximity, and convention proximity.

Two sites are near Memorial Auditorium. The task force's highest-rated site is one of them- at 16th Street between J and K Streets. 

A lot that is owned by the Sacramento Kings and is next to the Crocker Art Museum ranked second, followed by the other Memorial Auditorium location -16th Street between I and J Streets.

The task force dismissed a site at the Railyards in part because the area isn't ready for development yet. The existing Community Center Theater site was also dismissed because it is "land-locked" and wouldn't create the same type of economic spark that one of the other sites would.  

The Mayor's Performing Arts Theater Task Force director, Richard Rich says a new building would benefit the city more than a renovation of the existing Community Center Theater.

"We can do as little as possible and spend tens-of-millions of dollars to take a deeply-flawed situation and make it slightly less-flawed or we can embrace the renewed spirit that this city has and we can give our citizens a center that reflects their pride in the city."

The task force presented broad design ideas to the City Council last night.

Option A would seat 2200 people in a main theater with a 500-seat theater and a 300-seat multi-purpose theater or rehearsal space. It would have an estimated $254 million cost, with an annual spending requirement of $2.8 million.

Option B is Option A without the 500-seat theater. It would cost $189 million, with an annual spending requirement of $2.2 Million dollars.

Option C would provide flexible seating up to 2200 people with an orchestra or flat floor capability at a cost of $205 million and an annual spending requirement of $1.4 million.

The council asked the task force to choose a preferred site and design and report back within six months.

The city has been considering a new performing arts center since 1999.