Kennedy Center Receives $50 Million Gift From Chairman, Launches $125 Million Capital Campaign

Kennedy Center Receives $50 Million Gift From Chairman, Launches $125 Million Capital Campaign

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., has announced a gift of $50 million from board chair David M. Rubenstein in support of a $100 million expansion of the performing arts venue, the Washington Post reports.

While final plans for the project have not been announced, a spokesperson for the center said the initial concept includes three connected pavilions that will house classrooms; space for rehearsals and lectures; multipurpose rooms; and a limited number of workstations. Designed by Steven Holl Architects, the concept also calls for a pavilion that floats on the Potomac River and offers an outdoor stage.

The gift, the single largest in the institution's history, is part of a $125 million capital campaign launched by the center to raise funds for the project as well as other major programming initiatives. Kennedy Center president Michael Kaiser, who will step down in 2014, told the Post that he hopes the campaign will result in "a nest egg" for his successor.

The expansion project comes some seven years after a $650 million construction project first announced by the center in 2001 was postponed indefinitely after $400 million in federal funds for the project was cut from a 2005 transportation bill. "We are taking some elements of the plaza project and embedding it into this one," Kaiser told the Post. "But we are only building on the south. There's nothing that would preclude the [earlier] project."

Katherine Boyle. "Kennedy Center Announces Plan for $100 Million in Additions to Campus." Washington Post 01/29/2013. "The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Expansion Project." John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Web Site 01/29/2013.