By Staff –
Mayor Lovely Warren has announced that plans to develop a new 3,000-seat performing arts center in the Parcel 5 location at Midtown have evolved to include the construction of a new entertainment complex, as well as new mixed-use development.
Mayor Warren has also announced former Chamber of Commerce president Sandy Parker will now lead the project’s team, which is comprised of Morgan Management and the Rochester Broadway Theatre League (RBTL), going forward.
RBTL proposed the initial $130 million performing-arts project, which garnered a $25 million commitment from local businessman Tom Golisano.
Warren has also asked city council to hire a consultant to evaluate the project’s long-term impacts.
“Parcel 5 offers a rare opportunity to infuse our center city with a new sense of vibrancy and vitality, so that all of our citizens can participate in Rochester’s economic recovery,” Warren said. “Thanks to the vision and support of people like Sandy Parker, Tom Golisano and Bob Morgan, this project can become the cornerstone of a bigger, better, bolder Rochester – a city that works for all of its citizens and fosters true economic equality. This project is more than a building – it is an investment in the people of Rochester. It’s a job creator and it is now more than just a theater – it is an entertainment complex that will anchor our downtown with hundreds of thousands of visitors annually, and I could not think of anyone better to help move this effort forward than Sandy Parker. Sandy knows how to get things done, and she also shares my vision for a thriving, alive and exciting downtown as an anchor to move our city forward and create jobs.”
“The new Golisano Arts and Entertainment Complex at Midtown Commons” would include a new “I-Max” movie theater, as well as a separate theater for stage productions, in addition to housing, retail shops, and restaurants.
“I am very excited to be a part of the effort to re-envision Parcel 5 with exciting entertainment options, including a potential movie theater, new outdoor performance space along with a state-of-the-art theater for stage productions from Broadway-style shows to community plays,” Parker said. “Adding additional entertainment venues and functions to this project will ensure there is no “dark” time, and by including a plan for the re-use of the Auditorium Theatre we can accommodate additional performing arts needs within the community. I look forward to working with the mayor, and all of our partners to make this visionary job-creating project a reality.”
RBTL estimates the new entertainment center would book more than 200 “use nights” in a given year, bringing more than 360,000 people downtown annually with a projected $18.5 million in ticket sales for an overall economic impact of $55.5 million.
Developers have also agreed to adopt a ‘Rochester First’ hiring policy for the permanent jobs that will be located at the facility, the city said.
The public green space currently located between Parcel 5 and Elm Street will also remain, and officials said developers will actively seek to incorporate additional green building design elements into the project, including a green roof outdoor entertainment space.