NMSU breaks ground for the first phase of the Center for the Arts

July 1, 2010 by Julie M. Hughes NMSU News Center

New Mexico State University will celebrate, in partnership with the entire Paso del Norte region, the groundbreaking for the first phase of the Center for the Arts at 9 a.m. Thursday, July 15, at the corner of University Avenue and Espina Street.

When completed, NMSU’s Center for the Arts will gather the university’s scattered arts programs in one central location, encouraging more collaborative activity and providing the community easier accessibility to the many creative endeavors on campus. Its development has been planned in collaboration with each involved department and the community.

The first phase of the Center for the Arts project is a 49,000 square-foot building containing a 500-seat performing arts theater with full fly loft for teaching stage craft, multi-disciplinary classrooms, rehearsal spaces, offices, galleries, laboratories and support spaces.

This facility will begin the university’s intention to turn a face to the community of Las Cruces along University Avenue and to create a gateway feature at one of the main entrances to the university.

Ammu Devasthali, who chairs a Volunteer Leadership Advisory Committee dedicated to the project, said the Center for the Arts will be important for the entire border region.

“There is an abundance of talent in this region and we need a venue to showcase it,” Devasthali said. “Art is uplifting for everyone, especially during hard times. It does so much for the human psyche.”

A true blend of public and private funding is making this possible.

“Private sector contributions are critical to bringing a project of this scope to reality,” said Jill Grammer, director of development for the Center for the Arts. “Naming opportunities exist in all phases. All gifts of $1,000 or more will be recognized in the finished facility.”

The groundbreaking ceremony is being sponsored by Wells Fargo. For more information about the groundbreaking, call 575-646-1106. For more information on the Center for the Arts, visit http://cfta.nmsu.edu.

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