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CAC unveils redesigned lobby

Crews are putting the finishing touches on the remodeled Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) lobby.  There's a new entrance sign, new lighting, and a coffee bar and kitchen.

Jim Stapleton with the design team of FRCH says while the area around 6th and Walnut has prospered, it didn't feel like the CAC had kept up.  He says one change is color changing LED lights that have been added to the supporting columns in the lobby.

“We just really lit these up last night for the first time," Stapleton says. "You should see what it does to the neighborhood here.  You come down Walnut Street (and) it’s almost like New York City on a Saturday night, except it’s dark here.  But not any more after this. It’s all of those collective things.  It’s really working with the neighborhood, to kind of just add that one more level of vibrancy to Downtown.”

CAC Director Raphaela Platow says people sometimes had trouble finding the front door amid all the glass.  But it should be easier to find the entrance now.  It's beneath a neon sign that reads "Contagious."

“I think contagious is a really good metaphor for what we’re trying to do here at the Contemporary Arts Center; inspiring people through contemporary art,” Platow says.  “Hopefully the ideas, the thoughts, that we present here will be contagious and open peoples’ minds and inspire them to think or to consider another perspective... maybe to think about something a little bit differently.”

Planning for the redesign started 18 months ago.  Construction started in January.  The estimated cost is $1.1 million.

Bill Rinehart started his radio career as a disc jockey in 1990. In 1994, he made the jump into journalism and has been reporting and delivering news on the radio ever since.