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The Gig Harbor Regional Center for the Arts

View the concept for a Gig Harbor Regional Center for the Arts.

I had the pleasure at 7:00 P.M. last Thursday morning, October 25, 2012, at the Chamber Public Affairs forum at Cottesmore, of introducing the community to the Gig Harbor Arts Center Alliance, a nonprofit group dedicated to advancing the arts on this side of the bridge and to building an arts center facility or facilities.  

About one year ago, the arts community began to meet, and something remarkable resulted.  

I couldn't possibly explain it better than journalist Rodika Tollefson in the Kitsap Peninsula Business Journal a few weeks ago.  

Please click and read about the effort.  http://kpbj.com/feature_articles/2012-10-02/new_gig_harbor_nonprofit_has_big_dreams_for_regional_arts_center

If you would like to see the presentation and glimpse an exciting concept - the Gig Harbor Regional Center for the Arts - then view the attached PowerPoint presentation.  The presentation contains site layouts, specifications for the facility, and architectural graphics, and displays a hint of the dead-serious, engaging process throughout last winter that led to their development. 

Before you watch the presentation, bear in mind that this concept requires a $51,000 feasibility study to determine whether or not it can proceed as conceived. Once the study is finished, however, I am convinced that arts facilities and programs of some size and dimension will eventually result.  And perhaps, we will build, use and enjoy, all of us, what you see here.

Also, you might view the YouTube video of a somewhat similar arts center effort on the Cal State Northridge campus. The LA facility presents somewhat similar design objectives.  Instead of San Fernando Valley, substitute Puget Sound Basin south and west of Seattle.  

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

employee October 30, 2012 at 03:54 AM
I love to support the arts, but dont you think this is a bit large in scale for our community?
Mark Hoppen October 30, 2012 at 05:39 AM
I certainly wouldn't put it in downtown Gig Harbor. Compared to Costco, Home Depot, and St. Anthony Hospital, it's modest in size because it's multiple buildings on the same site, an arts campus approach. I distinctly remember comments that we couldn't have a new road, a new sidewalk, a new public dock, more than one park, a new city hall, a YMCA, a Boys and Girls Club, certainly not a history museum or decent places to shop. Probably never have a hospital. All these aspirations were in some way a bit large in scale for our community in their time. Maybe the feasibility study will prove this particular concept unsustainable, but I think it fits spatially in the area where it's proposed. That's why the proposed facility is a permitted use in its zone and is easily accommodated on the proposed site. I think it would look normal and make us proud, not to mention better educated, cultured, entertained, and in some spin-off areas around town, employed. Although it's larger in scale than what I could imagine individually, I know it could fit and I think it might sustain itself as envisioned.
employee October 31, 2012 at 03:43 AM
well said Mark, i can buy into that idea, but.......who is going to pay for it? Guys like you and the "artists" that will use this facility? Taxpayers?
Mark Hoppen October 31, 2012 at 05:51 AM
Click the blue url above and read Rodicka Tollefson's article in the Kitsap Business Journal. She summarizes the finances and feasibility aspects well. Who will use it is much broader than you are imagining right now. Cradle to grave, artists to ticket holders, small meetings to large conferences (not convention stuff), education to professional entertainment, local theatre to Broadway, writing to limited bronze casting. Who pays? Users, renters, leasees, ticket holders, etc., and .2% city sales tax, 8.5% to 8.7%. At least that's the case for the whole concept as envisioned. But, it takes a $51K feasibility study to prove whether the above scenario is valid and reliable over time (sustainable). Big idea = extensive, high quality proof. No local jurisdiction/education institution would have debt, liability, operational responsibility, or cost of any kind, unless it chose to rent or lease the facility for its own purposes. PenMet might do so; PSD and TCC would almost certainly do so.
Mark Hoppen October 31, 2012 at 06:06 AM
By the way, I know we're stuck with a bridge toll, and that's a tax to my way of thinking. But did you know that in terms of sales tax, out of all the cities in Pierce County and King County, according to the Association of Wasington Cities, only five cities have a lower tax rate than Gig Harbor: Eatonville, Carbonado, Roy, South Prairie and Wilkeson. And it's not much different than that if we raise it .2%, 8.5% to 8.7%.
David Roskoph February 12, 2013 at 01:55 AM
Mark, whether it flies or dies, you're a good citizen to promote our community. Good for you!

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