DUBLIN, Ohio (WCMH) — A new performing arts center in Dublin, which would house a several-hundred-seat theater, would cost an estimated $67 million to $119 million to build and boost the city’s economy, a recent study commissioned by the city shows.
Construction of a new performing arts facility in Dublin is gaining traction after a city council-commissioned study found there is strong demand among community members for a high-quality performance space.
“The assessment, which engaged a broad range of community members, led to conclusions that a new PAC would be feasible and recommended the development of an arts and innovation center to include a 400-800 seat theater,” the report by New York-based Webb Management states.
Webb’s report found a new facility is appropriate given residents in Dublin are 47% more likely than the national trend to attend live theater and 27% more likely to attend a classical music concert. In addition, Dublin is home to five middle schools with no theater or performance space.
Dublin’s three high schools do include theaters but are fully booked with little to no room for community rentals. While Abbey Theater at 5600 Post Road is a high-quality space, the building is limited by a capacity of 200 seats and is fully booked throughout the year.
So, Webb’s report calls on city council to pursue one of two possible performing arts centers. The first, a more expansive concept, includes a 700-seat theater, a 150-seat studio theater, a 1,600-square-foot multipurpose room and two classrooms. In total, the facility would span 91,470 square feet with a project budget between $95 million to $119 million.
The second, a smaller facility concept, would include a 500-seat theater, a 2,000-square-foot multipurpose room, and one classroom. The facility would span 64,147 square feet with a project budget between $67 million to $83 million.
“Proposed facilities will be expensive to build,” the study states. “A case can certainly be made for the 700-seat concept, but the 500-seat concept also delivers a building that is responsive to community needs while also delivering significant economic and community development impacts.”
For the 700-seat concept, the construction of new facilities would drive new sales of $144 million, new earnings of $38 million, and create 24 new jobs. For the 500-seat concept, the construction would drive new sales of $101 million, new earnings of $27 million, and create 18 new jobs.
The study outlines several types of proposed areas for the new center: a downtown location, a civic campus where the building is located with other civic facilities like a library or city hall, or a corporate campus via redevelopment or a new corporate park built from the ground up.
Webb’s report, titled the “Feasibility Study for Performing Arts Facilities,” was presented to the Dublin City Council on Monday. Watch the council meeting here, and view the full report below.