Study of GJ theater’s business model due out in March

The results of a study attempting to determine how the Avalon Theatre could operate as a profitable business will be released in mid-March.

The Downtown Development Authority and the Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra split a bill of $75,000 to have consultant group Westlake Reed form a business and operations plan for the theater.

The consultants had architects, mechanical engineers, theater technicians, designers and specialists in acoustics and lighting visit the theater and offer a structural assessment on what the facility could be used for.

The final piece of the consultants’ work is a potential-use survey. Consultants met with 40 Grand Junction residents that have an interest in using the theater, and the consultants used information from those interviews to create a list of other people that could offer useful input on the theater. Those people received an e-mail with a link to an online survey with questions that included:

Whether the survey-taker would use the Avalon for events;

What seemed fair to pay to rent the facility;

What types of events they’d like to see at the Avalon;

What price they’d pay for admission.

The cost of the survey was included in Westlake Reed’s fee.

The consultation will help the symphony orchestra decide if it should relocate its concerts from Grand Junction High School to the Avalon and will show how easily the Avalon could support that use as well as live performances, films and dance recitals, DDA Executive Director Heidi Hoffman Ham said.

“We need to make it as flexible as possible for multiple uses,” she said. “They (the symphony) have a list, and we’ll have to figure out which items are absolute needs and which are on the wish list.”


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