Our Mission: To organize and serve the greater Troy area in order to save, restore and promote Troy Proctor's as a viable multimedia and cultural attraction.
Friday’s press conference was an unqualified success for the effort to save Proctor’s. The committee spoke for about 45 minutes in front of an audience of reporters, photographers, and local residents in order to bring their message to all of the citizens of Troy.
The committee was finally able to dispel misinformation about Proctor’s and make the public aware of its main points that: a) Proctor’s Theatre is structurally sound and feasibly renovatable; b) Financing is available to support the restoration effort; and c) There is a viable business plan for operating Proctor’s once it is restored.
The event also resulted in favorable articles being published in the Troy Record, the Times Union, and the Business Review. Links to these articles can be found under “Media> Proctor’s In The News” from our homepage.
In response to the recent announcements regarding the RestoreNY grant for the Proctor’s demolition plan, the committee has scheduled a press conference for 11AM on September 04, 2009. It will be held in front of Proctor’s Theatre.
All are welcome and encouraged to attend!
Summer 2009 has thus far been a busy and productive time in the effort to save Troy Proctor’s Theatre, and the next chapter in the cause is well underway. Significant detail-work necessary to render the restoration project feasible and construction-ready is proceeding accordingly, with a corresponding increase in support for the movement.
On July 2, 2009, RPI graciously accommodated members of the Troy Proctor’s Committee, granting member and a team of professional consultants to enter and begin to study the Proctor’s Theatre and the attached office building. The best outcome of this visit was confirmation that the theater is extremely sound, being of steel beam and poured concrete construction, and will require very little structural work.
Based upon estimates gathered from the assembled team of professionals, the true costs of restoring the facility to as near its original glory as is reasonably possible comes in at ~$14.8M, as contrasted with the ~$30M suggested by supporters of the plan to demolish Proctor’s Theatre. It should be noted that the primary difference in these conflicting numbers lies in the Save Proctor’s plans not including demolition and rebuild, or significant structural changes which an alternative adaptive reuse of the theater would mandate – instead, for the most part, remaining within the existing footprint.
While the costing process was underway, the committee simultaneously consulted and worked with financial advisors to develop funding sources for the restoration portion of the project. These sources include conservative estimates of grant money from the Restore NY program, as well as salable historic and new-market tax credits. The results of this effort have been surprisingly fruitful, and will likely account for the majority of funds needed for the restoration. The resulting analysis indicates that only ~$4.7M will remain to be raised through grants, fundraising, and private conventional funding.
Most importantly, the committee drafted a business plan to operate Proctor’s Theater and front office building once restored. The plan demonstrates that Troy Proctor’s can not only support itself, but can begin showing a profit in year four of operations. Additionally, a conservative estimate, based on national entertainment industry reports, shows an operational Troy Proctor’s Theatre will annually generate $720,000 in sales for local Troy businesses. Our next step will be to further refine the business plan financials based on deeper research.
On August 25, 2009, the Save Troy Proctor’s committee presented detailed reports to the Troy City Council Planning Committee relative to the plan’s costs, funding, and business viability. At the meeting, RPI and Columbia Development were singled out for their willingness to communicate with and accommodate the committee in it’s efforts to gather information for the proposed alternative restoration plan. The Save Troy Proctor’s committee also reaffirmed its desire to keep Columbia Development as the primary contractor for the project if the restoration plan is accepted.
Council members and administration officials present at the meeting expressed interest in the plan. Councilman Ken Zalewski stated for the record his support for the Save Proctor’s restoration plan, further indicating he is willing to speak publicly in favor of it. Jeff Buell, the city’s economic development specialist, stated that the city could back the alternative plan, assuming the numbers withstood analysis.
Note: Times Union and Troy Record both wrote stories on the August 25, 2009 Troy City Council Planning Committee meeting with Save Troy Proctor’s. For links to these articles see Media: Proctor’s in the News on the homepage.
One of the greatest challenges in the fight to save Proctor’s Theater has always been the argument that the current demolition plan is the only “real” plan presented that has “real” numbers to show it can succeed. To combat this, the committee has been working with consultants and developers to produce its own plan. This effort has produced the previously mentioned “Strategic Plan”, a large document full of case-studies and financial analyses that show that renovating and operating historic theaters *can* work. However, that alone wasn’t enough.
The committee has now produced a Restoration Plan for Proctor’s Theater. This plan, which can be found at http://www.troyproctors.com/downloads/restoration_plan/, is a concise, specific document which details a practical way for Proctor’s to be restored. It contains those “real” numbers everyone keeps asking for, and maps out the specific requirements of all parties involved to make the effort a success. Some highlights:
The only thing the Restoration Plan needs is more data. The numbers in the document are based upon estimates made by professionals who can only look at pictures and old reports on the building.
On Thursday, June 4th, 2009, members of the Troy Proctor’s Committee spoke at the Troy City Council Meeting. They made a strong case for the Council to work to secure unfettered access for third-party professionals, and presented them with copies of both our Strategic Plan and our Restoration Plan for Proctor’s Theater. They also pointed out that the prohibitive restoration estimates being used to support the current plan seem to be grossly overstated.
This is where the your help comes in, Proctor’s supporters! Contact the Mayor and your City Councilors, and encourage them to work with RPI to allow us the access we need to make our case. Send this message to your friends and family. Whether they support the current plan or not, getting accurate, unbiased estimates can only help the side that’s right. It won’t cost the taxpayers anything, and will either show that restoration is a real, feasible possibility, or prove once and for all that there’s no practical way to save the building.
Want to know how you can help in the fight to save Proctor’s? Well, there are a bunch of ways.
First, you can sign the petition to save proctors.
Second, you can show your support by stopping by the table we’ll have set up at the Troy Farmer’s Market in riverside park on Saturdays starting tomorrow. If you like, you can volunteer to join a committee and get on our email list.
Third, get the word out! Tell your friends and co-workers about the effort to save Proctor’s. Send them to our website and ask them to sign the petition. You can download and print a flier to put up at your favorite cafe or workplace here(0.8MB). If you need help convincing your audience, we’ve got a great Proctor’s talking points presentation you can also download (6MB).
Fourth, sign up to help! You can contact us directly at email@example.com
Our goal with the Troy Proctor’s Committee is not just to halt the demolition of the Proctor’s building, but also to restore and operate it in some way that preserves it’s historic architecture and value. To this end, the committee has prepared a Strategic Plan for Proctor’s.
This consists of a 250 page document that contains demonstrations of the building’s soundness, several alternate plans for the space that can be implemented without demolition, and case studies of dozens of other theaters all over the US which have been restored from similar or even worse states of decay. There are estimates and analyses from qualified professionals demonstrating the real costs and concerns of a renovation, and showing that it will likely cost as much to demolish the building as to render it renovation-ready. It also contains economic projections that demonstrate that the facility can not only support itself, but even generate funds to support its own restoration, while bringing hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars in retail and restaurant sales to downtown Troy.
The first printing run of these proposals has just been completed, and meetings with public officials are being set up to deliver them as we speak. The entire committee is excited over this new phase in our advocacy for Proctor’s, and we hope you’ll all join us in our push to raise public awareness of this process.
Unfortunately, owing to the sheer size of the document files, we are unable to make then available for download from the website, but we hope soon to find a way to make the printing process affordable enough that we can provide hard copies to interested parties.