Florida’s Orange County sets aside additional $25 million for Phillips Center in Orlando

Posted on: April 3, 2013

In Tuesday’s (4/2) Orlando Sentinel (Florida), Mark Schlueb writes, “Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs said Monday the county will steer another $25 million to the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts with the hope the funding will allow construction to begin on the project’s final performance hall. The new funding would come from tourist taxes, raising the county’s contribution for the $500 million arts center to $163.6 million. The first phase of the project is already under construction. But money is still short for the final phase, a third performance hall that would host the Orlando Ballet and Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra. On Friday, Dr. Phillips Charities announced it would donate an additional $10 million, leaving the center to raise another $65 million to complete the project. The new $25 million contribution from the county lowers the fund-raising goal to $40 million. Jacobs said it’s crucial to begin construction of the final phase before work is finished on the first phase late next year. The cost to restart construction would raise the building’s price tag substantially, she said. … ‘I do think it will be a catalyst to get the remainder in,’ Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said. ‘Some of the folks who have been on the fence, worrying about whether that $75 million number is really achievable now will think their contribution can help close that.’ ”

Posted April 3, 2013