KUNM Local
1:02 pm
Tue March 1, 2011

Santa Fe's Lensic buys its own house

Santa Fe, NM – Santa Fe's Lensic Performing Arts Center announced Tuesday that it has finalized the purchased of its downtown home. The non-profit spent $2 million to buy the historic 821-seat building on West San Francisco Street. This came after a relatively quiet fund-raising effort that began in 2009.

The Lensic building had been owned by Greer Enterprises, and was being leased to the Performing Arts Center. Now that the non-profit owns the property, it will be exempt from property taxes.

Lensic Director Robert Martin says he's proud of how the community came together to make the purchase possible. "This building opened in 1931, two years after the Depression," Martin said, "And we're basically announcing that we've bought the theater really a little over two years since there was a pretty big economic collapse in the country. One of the first things that goes are the non-profits and the arts and education for children and all of that. So it's taken extra energy to be able to be sure that we don't cut back on what we do and that we can sustain it and that we can make a difference in this community."

The Lensic Theater is home to a diverse selection of performances that organizers say are a good representation of the many communities around Santa Fe. The theater will hold its 10th Anniversary gala on April 16th. And Lensic board members will now spearhead an effort to raise $3 million more to fund renovations and maintenance for the theater over the next 10 years.