Penticton’s Cleland Theater ‘overdue’ upgrade plan approved by council on Tuesday – Keremeos Review

“Late” equipment upgrades at Penticton’s Cleland Theater may be coming sooner rather than later.

Thanks to the city council’s approval of a phased upgrade plan on Tuesday, March 15, the theater’s 30-year-old equipment is set to be replaced or upgraded.

Two of the three phases of the upgrade plan have been approved by council, leaving city staff the option to go ahead and apply for grants to help defray the cost of the project.

Upgrades to the joinery and electrical and audio equipment are the first two phases of the plan, which was originally presented to the council in 2016.

Following Tuesday’s meeting, city staff are expected to request a total of $410,000 from the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund. The money would cover exactly 50% of the estimated cost of the project.

“The steps taken this year to address the challenges surrounding the Cleland Theater will provide much-needed revitalization to this important and popular arts and entertainment center,” said Penticton Mayor John Vassilaki.

“The Council hopes that the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund will see the value of the planned changes and support the City in its request for funding.

Vassilaki called the potential upgrades “overdue”, a description later echoed by the Count. Julius Bloomfield at Tuesday’s meeting.

The whole project is expected to cost $820,000.

Lighting upgrades to the Cleland Theater – the third and final phase of the plan – will be dealt with by the council at a later date.

The theater’s equipment was described by city staff as not being of adequate quality or size for touring bands.

“The board has instructed staff to correct long-standing audio deficiencies by undertaking updates to the theater’s power distribution, circuitry, network controls and speaker support assemblies,” the city added in a statement.

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