Orlando City Council OKs Phillips Center plan, June 23 groundbreaking

Posted on: May 24, 2011

In Tuesday’s (5/24) Orlando Sentinel, Mark Schlueb writes, “Four years after celebrating approval of a new downtown performing arts center, the Orlando City Council on Monday signed off on a new, post-recession financing plan that allows the stalled project to start construction. The council’s 6-1 vote sets the stage for a June 23 groundbreaking for the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts’ first phase—a 2,700-seat amplified auditorium for touring Broadway shows and a 300-seat theater for local groups. After the vote, more than 200 people gathered in the City Hall rotunda for an impromptu celebration. … Jim Pugh, who chairs the arts center board and donated $7.5 million of his own money to the project, wiped away tears. … Construction totals $201.6 million, not including another $72 million from private donations for the land and design of both phases. Mayor Buddy Dyer trumpeted the jobs that will come with the project. ‘The arts center will create something like 3,000 jobs over the course of construction, which will be a much-needed shot in the arm for our local economy,’ he said. Work is expected to take 37 months, putting the completion date in July 2014.”

Posted May 24, 2011