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240 per cent return expected on Kamloops performing arts centre investment

Artist's rendering of the proposed performing arts centre.
Image Credit: City of Kamloops
September 15, 2015 - 10:30 AM

KAMLOOPS - An annual economic impact of $11 million, a 240 per cent return, is expected by the time the proposed performing arts centre reaches its fifth year of operations.

The 97,600 square foot building will feature a 1,200 seat main theatre, a 350 seat studio theatre, an artist’s studio and several rental and rehearsal spaces. The overhaul was originally pitched to the public with an estimated $90 million price tag back in April, though the price tag has since been bumped up closer to $91 million.

During the construction phase, estimated to take three years, a total economic impact of $101 million and the creation of 76 jobs is expected, according to the recently released business case, which also predicts 64 long-term administrative, techinical and hospitality jobs in Kamloops. 

The city is expecting to take on $49 million worth of debt to be paid down over the course of two decades. The city has budgeted roughly $4.6 million per year towards the debt repayments, including approximately $1.2 million in interest alone. With $11 million expected to be brought in to the city as a result of the performing arts centre, the return on the annual investment of $4.6 million will be 240 per cent.

A debate on the performing arts centre will be held during Culture Days on Sept. 26. The event will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. at Thompson Rivers University and will be moderated by John O'Fee.

Kamloops residents will vote in a Nov. 7 referendum on whether or not they are in favour of the debt, which would work out to roughly $40 per year for the average household.

Phase two of the business case will be presented to city council Tuesday, Sept. 15. This phase includes a more detailed cost estimate and facility overview including architectural designs. City staff will prepare a fact sheet for distribution and continue to prepare for the upcoming referendum. Council approved $240,000 to hire consultants to conduct the feasibility study of the performing arts centre. 

The economic impact value is based on the expected revenues from the centre’s operations, including ticket fees and fundraising.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Dana Reynolds at dreynolds@infonews.ca or call 250-819-6089. To contact an editor, email mjones@infonews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015
InfoTel News Ltd

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