VPR Header
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations
VPR News
Public Post is a community reporting initiative using digital tools to report on cities and towns across Vermont.Public Post is the only resource that lets you browse and search documents across dozens of Vermont municipal websites in one place.Follow reporter Amy Kolb Noyes and #PublicPost on Twitter and read news from the Post below.

Town Hall Theater Project Dropped In Greensboro

There won't be a Town Hall Theater in Greensboro after all. The Greensboro Arts Alliance & Residency (GARR) is abandoning the project and has officially folded its Town Hall Theater Exploratory Committee.

GARR had an anonymous donor who had offered to pay for renovating the Town Hall in Greensboro into a public performing arts center, as a gift to the town. The donor also agreed to pay to construct new offices for the town, which is currently using the town hall as its town office building. However, Lakeview Union Elementary School is also using three rooms in the Town Hall as overflow classrooms. And a solution to replace those classrooms could not be identified.

The final Town Hall Theater Exploratory Committee meeting was held in January. Minutes from that meeting state it would be too expensive to relocate students. The committee discussed renting temporary classroom trailers and adding classrooms on the the school with Orleans Southwest Supervisory Union Superintendent JoAn Canning. However, that idea proved too costly for GARR to take on, and school officials said there is no room in the school budget to contribute to such a proposal. The minutes state:

In the case of the theater project, the temporary classroom trailers alone would cost $30-50k each to lease per year; the school would need three of these to replace the rooms lost in Town Hall, for a period of at least one year, if not several. The school would also need three new permanent classrooms for the long term.

The minutes show, at a minimum, relocating the three Town Hall classrooms would cost $340,000.

What the situation resolved down to was the following: If the Greensboro Arts Alliance & Residency, its donors, or outside donors could pay for three temporary classroom trailers ($30,000 to $50,000 per trailer per year for one or more years, i.e., $90,000 to $150,000 per year) as well as the construction of three new classrooms ($250,000 to $500,000), Lakeview Union would be able to move out of the three classrooms in Town Hall.

The cost proved to be prohibitive, preventing GARR from continuing with the project.

Despite a desire on GAAR’s part to do everything possible to help the school, there was no possible way for GAAR, its board, or its donors to find the hundreds of thousands of dollars that the school needs ... Moreover, the time and organizational resources involved in finding that extra money would take years and be very costly. Accordingly, GAAR has no choice but to withdraw from the Town Hall theater initiative.

GARR intends to provide an update for the residents of Greensboro in the town's annual report.

Related Content