The City of New Brunswick celebrated the grand opening of the $172-million New Brunswick Performing Arts Center (NBPAC) with a ribbon cutting ceremony this morning and special event last night in which more than 450 guests saw performances by the center’s four resident arts groups. Perhaps more importantly, many of the project’s 19 public- and private-sector partners were on hand to praise the completion of the two-year project and the impact it will have on New Brunswick and the rest of the state.
NBPAC will house and hold performances by the George Street Playhouse, Crossroads Theatre Company, the American Repertory Ballet and the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University. In fact, the site of the complex is where the former George Street Playhouse and Crossroads Theatre were located.
These groups will take advantage of five rehearsal spaces and two state of the art theaters: the 463-seat Elizabeth Ross Johnson Theater and the 252-seat Arthur Laurents Theater. Arts organizations and other groups can also take advantage of 30,000 square feet of office space above the theater complex.
The 23-story, 450,000-square-foot project also includes 207 residential apartments, 20 percent of which are affordable units thanks to a partnership between NBPAC and The Actors Fund that will market these units to graphic artists, actors, musicians, dancers and theater support personnel. The units in the apartment tower (19 stories) is owned and managed by Pennrose Properties. There is also a 344-space public parking garage at the site to accommodate residents, staff and theater goers.