More on the Arts Center ... That's what I call progress!
Well, folks, the Virginia Performing Arts Foundation may not have totally said "Uncle" yet, but clearly Doug Wilder has their arm bent around their back and today we heard "Uhhhn." Can the "kuhhhl!" be far behind?
After all this time it looks like we are going to get the Carpenter Center renovation and — depending on the Foundation's ability to raise the money each project at a time — possibly (as my dear surrogate grandmother Mrs. Belcak used to say) bupkus.
Which leads me to the upside! For years, this town has been building its "If you build it they will come" projects — 6th Street Marketplace, Valentine Riverside, the Canal Walk (yes, making glacierlike advances). We have built these things, then torn them down or closed them down and ended up with nothing or at least very little of the original idea.
But with today's announcement, we have made progress. We still raise the money, we still spend the money (now here's the good part) but we build nothing. We achieve the same end result but without having to build or knock down anything.
In a city where the Big Idea often leads to nothing, we have just learned how to cut out the middle man.