A ten-member ad hoc committee has now been formed in Phoenix to explore the possibility of building a Latino Cultural Center designed to serve and celebrate the legacy of the city’s growing Hispanic population.
According to city documents, a new structure could cost up anywhere from $3.6 million to $4.5 million to build, while the renovation of an existing space would come in at around $1.8 million.
The city must also decide exactly where the center will be located. Current renovation possibilities under consideration include a vacant structure in the popular Roosevelt Row arts district.
Two other structures, both owned by the city, are also being reviewed.
As proposed in previous public meetings, the center would be used for cultural events, lectures, art classes, and festivals serving a demographic that currently comprises roughly 40 percent of Phoenix’s population.
Funding for the project, however, is uncertain, although nearly $1 million still available from a 2001 bond approved by voters may be tapped for the center.
City officials have also suggested that additional funding could come from individual donors, and both foundation and corporate giving.
The ad hoc committee is made up of local Latino leaders and artists, as well as three members of the local business community, and two members of the Phoenix City Council.
By Garry Boulard
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