City of Peterborough to donate $75,000 for Traill College’s new amphitheater

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Councilors plan to offer Trent University $50,000 plus an additional grant, equivalent to the estimated $25,000 cost of building permit fees, to build the $1.4 million Jalynn Bennett Amphitheater. dollars provided by the university in the courtyard of its downtown campus.

At a virtual committee meeting on Monday evening, councilors gave preliminary approval to the plans; a final vote is still needed at a city council meeting later this month.

The amphitheater will be both community and academic at Catharine Parr Traill College, which is located in the London and Dublin Street area near Reid and McDonnel Streets.

The plan is to build a 100-seat open-air theater with stage lighting and a sound system, suitable for university lectures or community performances.

“It’s not just for Trent students — it’s for the Peterborough community as a whole,” the councilor said. Kemi Akapo on Monday.

The vote was 9-2 in favor of the $50,000 grant, with Coun. Keith Riel and the board. Andrew Beamer voted against.

Com. Kim Zippel had proposed that the city also provide an additional grant of approximately $25,000, the approximate equivalent of the cost of the municipal building permit, bringing the city’s total contribution to $75,000.

Voting for the supplemental grant was conducted separately and was 6-5 in favor: Coun. Dean Pappas, Advisor. Keith Riel, Councilor Andrew Beamer and Councillor. Lesley Parnell voted against.

The $75,000 offer is closer to the university’s total of $100,000; city ​​staff had recommended donating $50,000 instead, citing reasons such as the need to save money to maintain city-owned outdoor stages in Millennium Park and Nicholls Oval, for example.

The cost to build the amphitheater is expected to be just over $1.4 million, and the university has $910,000 to date: a federal government grant of $560,000, a private donation of $150,000 from the estate of the late Jalynn Bennett University Professor, as well as other internal donations. of $200,000.

Com. Dean Pappas called it a “vital project”, but also said he was hesitant to waive the building permit fee because the fee pays for the salaries of building inspectors.

But Zippel and Akapo said the proposal was not to waive building permit fees: it was to find money in the budget to provide Trent with an additional grant roughly equivalent to those fees.

Com. Keith Riel said this amphitheater could be competition for Showplace and Market Hall, however – venues that receive funding from the city.

But Zippel said it would be a “complement” to other sites – not a competition.

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