Sponsored By
An organization or individual has paid for the creation of this work but did not approve or review it.



No money, but curtains not closing on theater

The Rochester City Council turned down a request of $500,000 for "seed money" to help develop a performing arts center downtown.

"We just flat don't have money for this purpose," said council member Bob Nowicki, at the council's Committee of the Whole meeting on Monday.

But despite that, the proposed Rosie Belle Performing Arts Theatre is still a viable idea, said organizer Jan Daly.

"It's just not going to go as fast as we were hoping, but it's going to happen," she said.

The proposed theater site is at the southwest corner of South Broadway and Fourth Street.


There, the theater group sought money to begin hazardous waste removal and demolition, and to hire architects and fundraisers to begin planning for the site renewal.

Daly said 26 arts organizations have pledged to use the facility, which will include practice space and performing venues. A number of downtown businesses have written letters of support, and private fundraising has collected $1.5 million so far, she said.

City financing would further demonstrate local financial support for the project when the theater group solicits help from major foundations, Daly said.

The theater group has sought city funding for several years. City Administrator Steve Kvenvold said he believed the group was "owed a definite response" to its requests.

Though the answer to the funding question was "no," an alternative down the road might be to fund the project with a renewal of the city's half-cent sales tax, officials said.

"Right now, that seems to be our best approach," said council member Bruce Snyder.

What To Read Next
Get Local