I.F. Council approves plan for major Civic Auditorium renovations


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The following is a news release and photo from the city of Idaho Falls.

IDAHO FALLS — During tonight’s meeting, City Council approved a Memorandum of Understanding which includes a $750,000 donation, with matched funding by the City of Idaho Falls, for renovations of the Idaho Falls Civic Auditorium.

The generous donation of $750,000 comes from William J. Maeck for the purpose of renovating the interior portion of the Idaho Falls Civic Auditorium for the 2017-18 and 2018-19 fiscal years. The City’s match for the 2017-18 fiscal year budget is $400,000. The City’s proposed match of $350,000 will be discussed during the 2018-19 budget process.

Phase I of the large-scale multi-year renovation project will include new seating, improvements to acoustics, new paint on the ceilings and walls, installation of an electronic marque on Holmes Avenue, and replacement of the lighting dimmer system, carpet, sound shells and baffles.

“Phase one is primarily addressing what the theater folks call ‘front of the house’ concerns. In future years, additional phases are anticipated to address ‘back of the house’ matters. This seems like a lot of work and it comes with a hefty price tag, but it is important to remember that this well-used facility has been serving this community for decades. It’s certainly time for the community to return a little love. I could not be more grateful to Mr. Maeck for his generosity in launching the first phase,” states Mayor Rebecca Casper.

The Civic Auditorium Committee was created through City Ordinance 3064 to study the function and operation of the Civic Auditorium and to assist in the development of a long-term financial and facility plan to improve and sustain the auditorium’s viability.

The Committee consists of five volunteer, voting members appointed by the Mayor for a two-year term including Arthur Kull, Chair; Carrie Scheid, Vice Chair; Anne Staton Voilleque; Bonnee Taggart and Deidre Warden. Additionally, several non-voting ex officio members including City Councilmember Ed Marohn; General Services Administrator, Chandra Witt; Civic Auditorium Manager, Ed Morgan; Municipal Services Director, Pam Alexander; and the Director of the Idaho Falls Arts Council, Brandi Newton.

“The Civic Auditorium Committee has dedicated many hours to review and prioritize the renovation recommendations. These members have helped to bring a great many public projects to fruition – from art galleries and theaters to museums and music venues. This same group of passionate community members is also responsible for securing the donation from Mr. Maeck. To these volunteers, I express sincere gratitude for their service,” adds Mayor Rebecca Casper.

The Idaho Falls Civic Auditorium, located at 501 S. Holmes Avenue, was built through a bond passed in December 1949. The building was completed in 1952. It is a performing arts facility with a proscenium stage theater and a seating capacity of 1,892. Click HERE for additional information.

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