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Performing Arts Center Would Create Arts Quadrangle

December 12, 2002

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Exterior of Proposed Performing Arts Center (Download print-quality image)

MACOMB, IL –Plans for the construction of a Performing Arts Center (PAC) on the Western Illinois University campus would place the new facility adjacent to Browne Hall and create an Arts Quadrangle on the south campus.

The architectural firm of VOA Associates Incorporated worked with the Performing Arts Center Planning Committee and President Al Goldfarb on the development of space utilization in the facility and its suggested location. Architectural drawings of the proposed PAC facilities are available on the University website at

The PAC, framed by existing buildings, would face Western Avenue and have a weather-protected drop off area for patrons. A covered walkway connecting the new facility with Browne Hall and the College of Fine Arts and Communication Recital Hall in Simpkins Hall is suggested.

The 114,560 square foot facility would include a 1,900-seat proscenium main theatre, a 300-seat thrust stage theatre and a 150-seat studio theatre. The main theatre would accommodate approximately 1,000 seats on the main floor, with the remaining seats in two balconies. It would be located just north of a central lobby space.

The thrust stage theatre in conjunction with the rehearsal halls would provide useful new performance and teaching space. The studio theatre would be able to be set up with various seating and presentation modes. The remainder of the building program would provide space for support services and front lobby guest accommodations. The area would also include parking located underground and around the south and east sides of the facility.

Construction costs are estimated at $45,745,044. The University received $4 million in planning funds for the facility this fiscal year, and the Illinois Board of Higher Education recommended partial funding of $22.5 million for FY04 in the budget submitted to the Governor and Illinois General Assembly. The IBHE budget also recommended the remainder of the construction funds be allocated in a future budget year.

Proposed Performing Art Center Conceptual Drawings

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Office of University Relations