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City doesn't think Park Theatre will be ready by April 11
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McMinnville officials are voicing concern Park Theatre might not be ready for occupancy by April 11.
That’s the date for the annual charity concert for Business Roundtable Action Committee. BRAC chairman Todd Herzog has shown strong interest in using the Park Theatre in order to boost fundraising efforts, since it is scheduled to be the first event held there after renovation is complete.
However, city administrator Bill Brock is encouraging the city board to pass on the April 11 request to use Park Theatre.
“I think I need to bring this to your attention and I’ll be the bad guy to suggest it,” said Brock. “I would recommend you do not rent that facility for that benefit. We have a March 31 completion date for the Park Theatre. That’s if the contractor gets through. Eleven days after that, BRAC is asking to rent that facility. That’s eight business days.”
Brock said he does not believe eight days will be enough time to do what needs to be done, including carpet and seat installation, marquee completion, and having the engineer walk through the project, generate a punch list of unfinished items, and have the contractor complete those.
Then, says Brock, the state fire marshal will have to walk through, sign off on the project, and submit his findings to the state.
“The fire marshal will come in once everything is done and he will inspect the building,” said Brock. “It won’t be too long a process but it will be a process. If he finds something, it has to be fixed. If he doesn’t find anything, he signs off and it goes to Nashville. I am scared of that eight-day window. When you rent the building out and you cannot let them in it, you will be standing liable for all the money that they lost.”
While administrator Brock voiced a concern for a legal backlash, Alderman Everett Brock does not share those concerns.
“I talked with Todd on Thursday and I explained the situation. I don’t think they are looking at legal ramifications here at all,” said Alderman Brock. “I told him a lot of what you are saying. They are just begging us to try and get it ready. They want Park Theatre. They want to show it off. Everyone wants to see it. They want to be the first people in there.”
Vice Mayor Ben Newman asked if the marquee has to be complete before the building can be used.
Administrator Brock said, “I talked to the fire marshal and I said ‘What if the marquee is not done?’ He said he is not signing off on the project unless everything on the plans is complete and that includes the marquee.”
BRAC does have a contingency plan in place: If Park Theatre is not complete, the organization can use the auditorium at Warren County High School again this year. The auditorium seats approximately 500, while Park Theatre’s main level seats 391.
Administrator Brock suggests a change be made in the plan.
“Go with the high school and sell tickets based on our seating capacity and if Park Theatre is available, it’s available. Now, they couldn’t sell tickets based on that seating capacity because the high school’s is more than ours. I would hate for them to sell 500 tickets and we seat 100 less than that.”
At the meeting and over renovation of the Park Theatre are AEI Architects, Engineers and Planners president Peter Metts, W&O Construction project manager Mike Driver, and subcontractor Randy Adcock, from Cook Neon Signs, who is over marquee renovation. All three voiced concerns.
Metts says he will move as fast as possible on the punch list.
“I will begin the punch list as soon as Mike gives me the go ahead,” said Metts.
Adcock’s business will be working on the marquee and he estimates he will need 30 days, with 14 of those on site.
“This is a concern for me,” said Adcock. “I have 14 days on the bid. That’s 14 days on site. When we start on it, someone will be working on it 12 hours a day. I’m going to guess it will be 30 days. There are 176 pieces of neon that have to be made to replace all that’s there. We will have a problem with the date if we don’t get started soon.”
Alderman Brock says he will meet with Herzog to explain the city’s concerns.