Gusman leaks prompt plea for advance
leaky roof in downtown's Gusman theater has prompted Art Noriega,
executive director of the Miami Parking System, to seek an advance
on a $3.9 million grant designated for theater repairs.
Noriega is seeking a $1 million advance for a roof replacement and
air-conditioning repairs, saying the city-owned vintage 1926 theater
otherwise won't last through the summer.
far, the county has agreed to pay $79,000 for design and bid specifications
needed to seek bids on the two projects.
Spring, executive director of the county's Department of Cultural
Affairs, said the county is taking it one step at a time, but agrees
roof leaks must be stopped. "It doesn't make any sense to let
the theater deteriorate," he said.
$3.9 million from performing arts center bonds issued in 1997-98 were
set aside for Gusman renovations. But before releasing the funds,
county officials want a management agreement with the city to ensure
the theater remains open.
just not good public policy to invest money if the theater is in danger
of being closed," Mr. Spring said. The financially strapped city
has in the past threatened to sell or close the theater to cut costs.
"We want to stabilize the theater's operations," he said.
city and county officials are still months from a management agreement,
Mr. Noriega said, the theater needs emergency repairs.
negotiations on an agreement go on, he said, the county has agreed
in principle to pay for roof repairs he estimates will cost $200,000.
also hopes to persuade the county to advance $800,000 for air-conditioning
Spring said he has agreed to review bids for the repair projects.
"When you repair the roof, you get into all the duct work for