Major Remodel Proposed for Robinson Auditorium

A large remodel project for Robinson Auditorium will be proposed to the Little Rock City Board tonight. The project is expected to cost an estimated $68 million dollars.

If the city board approves the resolution in the future, the allocation of funds would move to a city-wide vote in a special election, which would be held Dec. 10.

"Pending a successful bond election by the voters of Little Rock, it will be financed by a new bond issuance. With the two percent A and P tax dedicated to paying it off. So not a new tax, not an extension of a tax, just a dedication of an existing tax to pay off a new bond issuance," Gretchen Hall, the president and CEO of the Little Rock Convention and Visitor's Bureau said.

The center has not seen renovation since 1974. If the remodel is passed, the construction would coincide with the construction of the Broadway bridge and would start about the same time, in mid to late 2014. The project is expected to take 26 months.

The performance hall would have a total overhaul as well as the lobby. The architects hope to streamline the lobby entrance and create two street level entrances. They also plan to add a conference center facing the river.

Channel 7 News asked people in Little Rock if they would be willing to vote for the remodel.

"I think it's a staple of Little Rock, in my opinion. I've been there numerous times, it's getting old. Some of the spaces are getting run down," Jacob Bridges said.

Cat Thomas, who has been to several Broadway plays at the auditorium said she would be opposed to any changes.

"I think it's good the way it is, I wouldn't think there'd be a need for it," Thomas said.