Sunday’s meeting of the Gig Harbor Arts Center Alliance served as the annual get-together of the nonprofit organization.
GHACA serves as an advocacy group for the establishment of a comprehensive regional arts center envisioned as serving all arts in the greater Gig Harbor area.
The facility would also serve as a large conference center providing meeting space in a highly capable venue with numerous breakout rooms and a commercial kitchen. This meeting space would be largely unique in the Puget Sound region because, unlike area convention centers, the facility will offer numerous small break-out rooms serving up to 50 participants in addition to the large venues on the campus.
This summer, GHACA received the results of an economic analysis designed to explore the sustainability of such a facility, job creation throughout the community, and tax ramifications to local jurisdictions.
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The study, conducted by Johnson Consulting of Chicago, showed that the facility required additional space to serve the largest performance venue within the campus center, said GHACA vice president Mark Hoppen.
“Consequently, the center would be over 100,000 square feet at a cost of just less than $60 million, about the price of a large suburban middle school,” Hoppen said. “With such a configuration, the facility would be nearly self-supporting within five years of operation.”
According to the economic feasibility study, the Gig Harbor Regional Arts Center would nearly self-sustain within five years. The center would generate community-wide $11 million annually. Moreover, the center would foster 230 permanent jobs in retail areas throughout Gig Harbor and its surrounding areas.
The city of Gig Harbor would realize annually $230,000 in sales tax and $70,000 in additional lodging tax.
“The economic analysis by Johnson Consulting clearly demonstrated that this facility, or any arts facility for that matter, is feasible in Gig Harbor,” added GHACA president Jonathan Bill.