Brevard Tourism Council Boosts Veterans Park Amphitheater Funding

The Brevard County Tourism Development Council (TDC) recently deliberated over a substantial upgrade to the Veterans Memorial Park, involving the construction of an amphitheater and additional facilities, ultimately deciding to provide an additional grant of $1,228,807 to the project. The decision comes in light of the project’s increased scope and costs, now totaling $7.9 million. The council recognized the project’s capacity to honor veterans, stimulate the local economy, and attract tourists. The meeting also touched on other matters, including beach restoration efforts and the potential risks of a proposed tax bill that could impact funding for these projects.

The meeting’s primary focus was the Veterans Memorial Park Amphitheater project, which had previously been awarded around $1.27 million, with the Myra board committing an additional $1 million. The project’s scope has since expanded to include amenities such as restrooms, concessions, and increased parking capacity. The amphitheater’s design process involved multiple charettes with rzk Architects, aiming to create a facility that could host up to 5,000 attendees for special events. This development has caught the attention of economic stakeholders and has been linked to a $120 million investment in a nearby luxury apartment unit project by Woodfield Development.

The council discussed the financial implications of the amplified project cost, which has escalated to $7.9 million. The discussion considered the return on investment regarding tourist visitation and the utilization of tourist development funds. Despite reservations from some members about the financial commitment, the project garnered support due to its potential to honor veterans and draw tourism dollars. The economic impact analysis, redone with guidance from the council and a professional team, estimated an increase of 40,500 new paid attendances. Additionally, the state has contributed a million dollars towards the endeavor.

A representative from Myra, Larry Low, provided an overview of the request for additional funds, explaining the necessity to complete the amphitheater. The council was receptive to the request after a discourse that sought clarification on the project’s status and the proposed use of the additional funding. The council engaged in a debate about the design elements, such as the need for rain cover over the amphitheater and considerations for future expansions. The potential hiring of a third-party manager to oversee the facility’s operations and coordinate with promoters was also discussed. After deliberation, the council moved to grant the additional funds and extend the groundbreaking timeline by one year.

In addition to the amphitheater discussion, the TDC was presented with a detailed report on the ongoing beach restoration projects, highlighting the progress made in response to Hurricanes I and Nicole. The council also reviewed the possible implications of a proposed tax bill that could affect funding for beach restoration.

During the meeting, the marketing committee reported on a significant media spend for a spring campaign, although the cultural committee had not met, and the capital facilities committee had no report. However, the sports committee provided updates, and the new executive director of the Brevard Cultural Alliance made a public comment, expressing gratitude for the partnership with the council.

As the meeting progressed, a brief update was requested from an attendee named Mike, who was asked to keep his remarks succinct. The meeting concluded with a disclaimer regarding public comments.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.
County Manager:
Frank Abbate
Tourism Board Officials:
Wayne Soard, Andrea Young, Rita Pritchett, Rob Medina, Christy Galzerano, Donny Dedonatis III, Matt Boucher, Tom Hermansen, Keith Winsten

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