Metropolis to start $120,000 lobby renovation featuring 'video wall'

 
 
Updated 5/24/2018 5:01 PM
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  • Metropolis Performing Arts Centre in downtown Arlington Heights is about to begin a major renovation of its lobby, thanks to a donation from Jack Whisler and funds from the village.

      Metropolis Performing Arts Centre in downtown Arlington Heights is about to begin a major renovation of its lobby, thanks to a donation from Jack Whisler and funds from the village. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer, November 2017

Metropolis Performing Arts Centre in downtown Arlington Heights will embark this summer on a full-scale renovation of its lobby.

The $120,000 project will include updated lighting, fresh paint on walls and new flooring. But the primary feature is a $38,000 "video wall" made up of multiple flat screens along the back wall of the lobby. It will be used to promote upcoming shows and events, officials said.

"We think it's going to be a very important part of our marketing and development efforts going forward," said Metropolis board President Steve Daday.

Most of the project -- $100,000 worth -- is being funded with donations, including a portion of what officials have described as the "substantial" gift from longtime resident Jack Whisler last year. The donation from the retired chairman of Brian Properties, an Arlington Heights commercial real estate management firm, is the single largest in the theater's history.

As a thank you, Metropolis is naming the lobby for Whisler and his family.

The other $20,000 of the lobby renovation is being funded by the village. Trustees approved the payment earlier this week.

"Because we're improving the lobby to such a considerable degree, the support from the donor and the support from the village is so critical to the combination of things that will be useful for that great renovation," said Executive Director Joe Keefe.

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