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Archive for Tuesday, October 6, 2009

$2.5 million Lied Center expansion planned

The Lied Center will undergo a $2.5M expansion to improve the lobby, education pavilion and offices. The Lied Center is located on KU's West Campus.

The Lied Center will undergo a $2.5M expansion to improve the lobby, education pavilion and offices. The Lied Center is located on KU's West Campus.

October 6, 2009, 9:17 a.m. Updated October 6, 2009, 4:46 p.m.

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Lied Center expansion plans set

KU's Lied Center is set for a multi-million dollar expansion, and officials are excited about the venue's possibilities. Enlarge video

A major expansion is planned for Kansas University’s Lied Center.

A $2.5 million gift from the Lied Foundation will fund expansion of Lied Center’s lobby, construction of an education pavilion, creation of additional office space and installation of displays about the history of Ernst F. Lied and the Lied Foundation Trust.

Tim Van Leer, executive director of the Lied Center, said the expansions would enhance the existing functions at the building, and would allow the Lied Center to pursue new programs.

“This is the kind of thing that causes us to be just thrilled about the potential for the future,” Van Leer said.

The 1,800-square-foot lobby expansion frees up space around the existing concession stand and restrooms, he said. The expanded lobby space had been planned in the building’s original design, but was later scaled back, he said.

The educational pavilion will serve as a multi-purpose space that could be used for educational activities, rehearsal space and pre-performance dinners, Van Leer said. That space had been planned as part of a larger Lied Center expansion in 2005 that would have included an 800-seat auditorium. Those plans were scrapped after a fundraising campaign failed to raise enough money for the project.

The new 60-foot by 40-foot pavilion will roughly match the area of the existing stage, Van Leer said, making it ideal for rehearsals. The room will installed over an existing outdoor garden, which will be moved to accommodate the new addition.

Van Leer said the Lied Center would remain open throughout construction, and that tentative plans called for construction to begin in the spring, and to be completed by 2011.

The plans will be submitted to the Kansas Board of Regents at its Oct. 14 and 15 meeting.

The performing arts facility located on KU’s west campus opened in 1993 after a $10 million gift from the Lied Foundation Trust — a gift that, at the time, was the largest in KU’s history.

The educational displays on the foundation and Lied would likely be placed on the walls of the new spaces, Van Leer said.

The Lied Foundation was established by Ernst F. Lied, who owned a car dealership in Omaha, Neb., and invested in Las Vegas real estate. Its sole trustee is Christina Hixson, a longtime associate of Lied’s. The foundation has also donated $3.1 million for Lied Center outreach programming, $5 million for student scholarships and $1.5 million for medical research.

Comments

Steven Gaudreau 4 years, 6 months ago

They should build it 10 stories tall and sell condos on top and put 5 or 6 bars inside including a giant dance club in the basement.

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beawolf 4 years, 6 months ago

KU_cynic (Anonymous) says…

"And yes, the seats I've vacated can now be had by somebody else whose tastes run to what I consider to be mediocre live entertainment.".....

And what do you consider to be an enjoyable evening of live entertainment? A night at "All-Stars"?

Oh, and thanks for the tickets. I'm looking forward to enjoying the Cyprus String Quartet.

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Joel Hood 4 years, 6 months ago

MM - you must be a troll. No one is that stupid.

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jafs 4 years, 6 months ago

MM,

The money is said to come from the Lied Foundation, not the state or federal government.

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booze_buds_03 4 years, 6 months ago

Did you read the article machiavelli, or are your reading comprehension skills that of a 1st grader?

The money was donated for that purpose by the Lied Foundation. KU cannot then just decide to spend it on something else....moron

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Machiavelli_mania 4 years, 6 months ago

Why does KU continue to spend on this that are not necessity?

Why?

We see increases of tuition. We see decreased money from the Regents.

Honestly, I think the State money should be far more evenly distributed than it is.

Hays is a great college. Wichita State has it's good qualities. They both should get more money, and KU less.

Why on earth does KU get more money, and to spent it to frivolously on unnecessary things??????

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KU_cynic 4 years, 6 months ago

My disengagement with the Lied Center pre-dates the end of faculty discounts.

And yes, the seats I've vacated can now be had by somebody else whose tastes run to what I consider to be mediocre live entertainment. Viva la difference.

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Kash_Encarri 4 years, 6 months ago

Those shows probably weren't so mediocre when cynic got in for free. (S)he is probably still bitter about losing that little perk last year.

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Stuart Evans 4 years, 6 months ago

they seem to be doing ok without you cynic.

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KU_cynic 4 years, 6 months ago

Perhaps they'll create a nice area for the Fred Phelps crazies to congregate more comfortably. Their obnoxious presence and mostly mediocre Lied Center programming are why I no longer am a Friend of The Lied.

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Eride 4 years, 6 months ago

This is actually pretty darn necessary. I have been in attendance at the Lied Center many a time when their was a storm occurring at the end of the performance and the lobby is not big enough to handle that. In fact, it really isn't big enough to handle a normal crowd in there and the lack of a covered area for the main exterior doors is ridiculous.

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hometownhawk 4 years, 6 months ago

ralphralph is cranky because he missed nap time.

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ralphralph 4 years, 6 months ago

I always have thought, "If only the lobby was bigger ..."

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Danimal 4 years, 6 months ago

Good for the Lied Center, it's a nice venue. On Murphy Hall, they need to build the fountain that was supposed to go in front of the new addition.

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ohgeeze 4 years, 6 months ago

I kinda liked Murphy the way it is....

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hail2oldku 4 years, 6 months ago

Sorry sad, but why would the Lied Foundation donate money to renovate Murphy Hall?

Murphy does need some work, but the Lied Center is now the place for performances on campus and it could definitely benefit from the expansions being outlined.

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sad_lawrencian 4 years, 6 months ago

They should use that money to renovate Murphy Hall... if any building on the KU campus is in need of renovation... Murphy Hall is it.

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