Local officials to lobby state for release of Warner Theatre funding: Final Warner upgrades rely on state money
2/28/2010, 6:20 a.m. EST
The Associated Press
(AP) — MCT REGIONAL NEWS
By Kevin Flowers
Erie Times-News, Pa.
Feb. 28–State government came through with more than $40 million to help build the Bayfront Convention Center and is contributing $32 million to Tullio Arena’s expansive makeover.
Now, the Erie County Convention Center Authority is moving forward with plans to secure $11 million in state funds to finish revamping the historic Warner Theatre.
Casey Wells, the Convention Center Authority’s executive director, said the authority plans to submit a formal “request for project action” to Harrisburg soon, in hopes that Gov. Ed Rendell releases the $11 million to finish a fourth and final phase of upgrades at the Warner, 811 State St.
The funding will be used to enlarge the stage to accommodate larger touring productions and shows, such as “Phantom of the Opera,” ”Les Miserables” and “Mamma Mia!,” Wells said.
The money would also pay for new dressing rooms; a new heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system; new lights and rigging; a new sound system; loading docks; and an elevator to provide access for the disabled to the dressing rooms, Wells said.
”We have to prepare and present our application to have that money released,” Wells said.