A friend of mine sent me this letter that didn't make it on the Editorial Page. This project was doomed to struggle when the "movers and shakers" didn't perform as they promised. What is new in Peoria? Now I'd say its just doomed to cost the taxpayer a lot more money over the next 5-----10-----20 years. Maybe 40 to 60 years.
Lakeview records show that over $40,000 has already been spent on IMAX???? Those trips, rooms, and dinners must be expensive.
Letter sent to PJ Star forum 11/22/10 at 11:43 a.m.:
Much has been said over the last few weeks over the inclusion--or not---of an IMAX-branded theater at the proposed Peoria Riverfront Museum. Yes, we were promised an IMAX theater there. No, it doesn't look like we're going to get one.
The problem is not that this is yet another taxpayer-funded bait and switch. The bigger problem is, if not an IMAX, will the desired outcome be the same?
The whole reason we were going to move what already exists at Lakeview Museum to the old Sears block was that, with the addition of the CAT Visitor's Center AND an IMAX-branded theater, paid attendance to the museum would increase dramatically over current Lakeview levels. Thousands of tourists from outside the county would come to Peoria and spend money here.
However, the new redevelopment plan clearly states that if the PRM must go with an “alternate vendor” to IMAX, it “will result in significantly lower attendance”.
The theater (IMAX or not) will have a separate admission fee from that of the main museum. Can someone please tell me what will be at the new main museum that would draw people from as far away as, say, Bloomington----that does NOT already exist in Peoria?
Without an IMAX-branded theater at this location, what would cause paid attendance to increase over current levels at the existing Lakeview Museum?
Are we going forward with this (mostly) taxpayer-funded project simply because a select few have put a lot of time into it? Because it's "too big to fail"? Or are we just throwing good money after bad?
P.S. Thanks to Merle for getting HIS letter published---Well done!