Let’s Do The Math. . .

NewcolorLOGOThere has been a lot of talk about the Palm Beach Cultural Council (click for link to PBCC website) coming to Lake Worth, most of it  positive.  However, there are some who feel that we should be getting a better “deal” from the Cultural Council.  The phrase 50/50 has been thrown about quite a bit. Still others feel that the benefits of the Cultural Council moving here are impossible to quantify and we have more pressing needs to address.

After attending both CRA meetings regarding the Cultural Council and reviewing the backup (click for link), (click here to listen to audio of CRA meeting) it is clear that this is a good move for Lake Worth and in actuality we’ve made a better than 50/50 deal already.

Okay let’s do the math:

Cost to Lake Worth; Forgivable Loan 700,000 over ten years, with provisions to recoup if PBCC fails to satisfy the agreement in full.

Costs to Palm Beach Cultural Council;  Building 900,000; cost of renovations 1,000,000.   Additionally, the Cultural Council has committed to begin a fund raising effort to secure 3,000,000 in donations for a permanent endowment to cover the facility’s operating expenses associated with the exhibition space, Visitor’s Center and other public functions that will be located within the PBCC headquarters.

Considering just the building and renovation will cost approximately 1.9 million dollars, of which Lake Worth is contributing 700,000, it seems like it is already better than a 50 /50 deal for us.

If you factor in the endowment PBCC is going to raise, then it is a substantially better than 50 / 50 deal. There are those in our community who say the value of PBCC coming to Lake Worth is just pie in the sky speculation and the PBCC is coming to town with it’s hand out. To that point let me reiterate, naysayers need to keep in mind that a large portion of the 3 million dollar endowment will be for … the exhibition space, Visitor’s Center and other public functions that will be located within the PBCC headquarters”. These public functions will be a direct and tangible benefit that will draw people to Lake Worth.

Another very real benefit will be the renovation of one of our Landmark Historic Buildings.

Either the downtown theater,

ppcc1 Or 1000 Lake.

ppcc2PBCC has contracted with REG Architects to oversee the renovation of the building. Headed up by Rick Gonzalez, REG Architects is a nationally recognized firm specializing in historic renovation. (Click here to visit REG’s website) Locally they are best known for their widely acclaimed work in restoring the West Palm Beach Court House pictured below.


The media attention from this restoration will be as priceless as it was in the case of the Court House and no doubt attract others to consider investing in Lake Worth.

Yes 700,000 dollars is a lot of money and we should spend it wisely. But when you look closely, those  700,000 dollars are bringing an investment of over 4 million dollars into our city. I am not sure how we could have negotiated a better deal.

And yes, there are many pressing problems, including blight, in our City that need to be addressed. However, even if we could wave a magic wand and clean up those problems overnight, we would simply start backsliding again without adding reasons that make people want to invest and live here.

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