That's the vision of Broward County Commissioner Dale Holness, who broke ground today standing side-by-side with his former colleagues on the Lauderhill City Commission on what will one day be the Performing Arts Center of Lauderhill and the new Broward Central Regional Library.
"We already have a world class park that hosts professional international cricket sporting events. We will soon have a performing arts theater that will seat 1,200 people. It is my hope that we will build a hotel nearby and revive plans for the Gospel Hall of Fame. Together this will create a tourist destination and bring renewed economic development to central Broward," said Commissioner Holness.
The state-of-the art Performing Arts Center of Lauderhill will have a full use proscenium 1,200 seat-theater, lush landscaping, a unique Florida tropical design, an art gallery, a permanent and original public art piece, meeting/classrooms, banquet/reception facilities, and will seek qualification as a Gold LEED standard facility.
Commissioner Holness, who served for six years as a Lauderhill City Commissioner, was instrumental in moving the landmark project forward. "Experts told us that in order to be successful the theater must hold at least 1,200 people with room for an orchestra. So, I was adamant about that. This will allow us to attract professional performances at a more affordable price. This facility is also perfectly located to complement sporting events at the Central Broward Regional Park & Stadium. The new library brings additional educational and entertainment opportunities to heart of central Broward County."
The new Broward County Central Park Library will be unique in theme and programming. This Library will have components related to the history of sports, a multi-media approach to recreational education, sports films, fitness classes/workshops and environmental education. The new 10,000-square-foot library will house a collection of 40,000 items, provide public access to 25 computers, a multipurpose room with a capacity to hold 75 people, tutoring rooms, a children's area and will be open five days a week.
Funding came from several sources: $3 million from Broward County's 1999 Library Bond Referendum, $5.8 million from the City of Lauderhill's voter approved 2005 General Obligation bond and a matching $5.8 million from the Broward Cultural Council, a division of the Broward County Commission.
The facility is being designed by world renowned theater architects Westlake Reed Leskosky, Inc. in partnership with local architect Barranco Gonzalez, built by D. Stephenson Construction, and interior designed by Cecil Hayes, America's Premier Interior Designer.