Expansion project of the Eastern Brunswick Community Arts Center planned
BRUNSWICK EAST – The Township Community Arts Center could benefit from some improvements thanks in part to state funding.
A facility expansion project, currently in the early stages of planning, is expected to include a black box theater; an expanded, full-service open-air theater with professional sound system, lights, seating and concessions; and access to the building’s washroom from the outside, according to Mayor Brad Cohen.
The plan also calls for East Brunswick TV to relocate to the premises once the work is completed, and an indoor art gallery and meeting room will be built, the mayor said.
Governor Phil Murphy approved $ 1 million for the expansion project in his 2022 budget.
“The project will also be funded through grants, fundraising and institutional philanthropy,” Cohen said. “It will not be funded by taxpayer dollars.”
The East Brunswick Arts Coalition will be responsible for fundraising, and the township’s Parks and Recreation department will work on the design. Community members will also have a say in the project, the mayor said.
Once state funding is received, DMR Architects will produce architectural drawings and renderings for the project, Cohen said.
“Once we have the renderings we will have a better idea of the total cost of the project,” said the mayor, adding that he hopes the renderings will be ready by early next year.
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Cohen said the Community Arts Center programs attract not only township residents, but residents of surrounding communities as well.
“I think we can turn this into a very large community area if we take the tentacles out a bit beyond eastern Brunswick,” he said. “This is why we are confident that we can raise funds from philanthropic and county sources through grants in the arts. We not only intend to support the arts in Eastern Brunswick, but the arts in the larger community. ”
The mayor said there was a growing demand for the arts.
“Eastern Brunswick has always been a very large arts-centric community. We have always had a commitment to the arts. I think the arts touch everyone in one way or another. It covers almost all the disciplines of the canton. It breeds creativity, ”he said. “We just want to provide a place in this part of the county that meets everyone’s needs. I think we have the perfect location and the ability to make it happen. I think it will become a destination for everyone. ”
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The Community Arts Center is located on nearly 43 acres of Green Acres property at 721 Cranbury Road.
It currently houses the Elliott Taubenslag Theater, a concession area, changing rooms, a set design and construction room, and a community hall. There is also an outdoor amphitheater.
“The building was built from the start with the understanding that it could be expanded,” Cohen said. “It’s a little box-shaped building on a lot of land. They were already thinking about the expansion when it was built.”
The public memorial to lost souls will also be located at the site, the mayor said.
Susan Rent covers Middlesex County and more for MyCentralJersey.com. To get unlimited access to his work, please register or activate your digital account today.