Saturday, June 26, 2010

Old Blair Auditorium Funded by Montgomery County Council

We wanted to make sure you heard the exciting news: On May 27, 2010, the Montgomery County Council voted to formally establish the Old Blair Auditorium Re-use project and fund it in the Fiscal Years 2011-16 Capital Improvements Program (CIP)! (Note that construction projects are funded from the capital budget, which has increased this year, and is not subject to the constraints of this year's reduced operating budget.)

Architectural planning and design will take place in FY12 and the construction work is planned for FY16. "Option 3" of the feasibility study was selected. This option, which calls for a 750-seat auditorium, four adjacent multi-purpose rooms, and an elevator to provide accessible access to the 2nd floor multi-purpose rooms, was the option recommended by the community.

The county's FY12 funding ($600,000) will serve as matching funds for the 2005 state bond bill funds of $600,000.

We are extremely grateful to Councilmember Valerie Ervin, who proposed the community oriented multi-use solution and pressed for full funding. We also thank Councilmembers George Leventhal, Nancy Navarro, and Duchy Trachtenberg, who voted for the project in committee, and Councilmember Marc Elrich for his strong support, as well as the full council for passing the final budget that includes this project.

Maryland State Senator Jamie Raskin and Maryland Delegates Sheila Hixson, Heather Mizeur, and Tom Hucker also deserve our thanks for ensuring that the state bond bill funding was extended to meet the project schedule.

Special thanks also to former Senator Ida Ruben who, along with Delegate Hixson in the House of Delegates, who got the bond bill process rolling in the state Senate in 2005.

Visit our web site (http://oldblairauditorium.org/) to learn more about the selection renovation option.

Thanks for all your wonderful support over the years!

Stuart Moore
President
Old Blair Auditorium Project, Inc. Board of Directors

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