Frequently Ask Questions
Q: When will the project actually come to life?
A: Since MIFA bought the theater in 2009 we have been putting together all the necessary pieces for the renovation of the theater. We have hired an architect who has been working on the plans. We’ve put together a team of professionals to help us with fundraising, strategic planning, and historic preservation, and have been presenting events to whet the community’s appetite for what could happen at the Victory.
Q: Are there steps that an individual can take, beyond endless fundraising, to actually make this happen?
A: Yes, letting people know how important this project is to you and our community is important! You can also share these answers with all who would be interested. Please visit our website, follow us on Facebook or Twitter, and if you have other questions please contact us so we can answer them.
Q: Are there legislative avenues or other avenues?
A: Yes, and we have been working with Congressman Richie Neal; the Western Mass. legislative delegation, including State Senators John Velis, Eric Lesser, and Adam Gomez, Representatives Pat Duffy, Carlos Gonzales, and Lindsay Sabadosa; Keiko Orrall, Executive Director of the Mass. Office of Travel and Tourism; Jose Delgado, Director of the Governor’s Western Mass. office; as well as Holyoke Mayor Joshua A. Garcia and Economic Development Director Aaron Vega.
Q: Why, with so much funding in place, is nothing happening?
A: Due to the fact that a majority of the funding is in Tax Credit equity and all of the funds must be raised before this funding can be awarded, we still have a ways to go before the construction can begin. Any work done now would be subtracted from the budget on which the amount of tax credit equity is based, thus lowering the allocation.
PRIOR HISTORY TO MIFA’S ACQUISITION OF THE VICTORY THEATRE
Q: What Happened To The Armand Hammer Exhibit Money?
A: $1.6 M raised 1987- 1993
Monies raised by:
Victory Theatre Commission
Save the Victory
Proceeds from Armand Hammer Exhibit – Greater Holyoke Inc.
Monies well spent: 1987 – 1993
Hazardous Materials Survey and Removal
Architectural plans for movie theater/community theater
Mothballing of building – windows and doors boarded up
In the 1990s the renovation budget for the theater was $9M, but this money was unrealizable at the time.
2009 MIFA assumes Project
Remaining dollars from Armand Hammer Exhibit proceeds: MIFA received $20,000 from the Victory Theatre Commission in 2009 and $200,000 from the Greater Holyoke Foundation in 2010 after purchasing the theatre from the City in the fall of 2009. These funds have been used to advance the Victory Theatre Renovation Project.