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Revitalization plans announced for Sunken Garden Theater

The theater was originally constructed in 1930. Here's what the renovations to the Sunken Garden Theater would include.

SAN ANTONIO — The Brackenridge Park Conservancy announced its plans to redevelop the Sunken Garden Theater as an outdoor performing arts venue.

Plans for the new Sunken Garden Theater include seating for 7,000 people, with fixed stadium seating under a mass timber-frame roof, grass berm for seating, enclosed stage house, expanded venue entrance, restored historic waterfall features and more. 

"With the proposed changes to the theater, the Brackenridge Park Conservancy aims to host diverse programming for locals and visitors alike to enjoy," the press release says.

The theater was originally constructed in 1930. The renovations to the Sunken Garden Theater would include:

  • Preservation of the amphitheater 

  • Seating for over 5,900 reserved seats and over 1,100 lawn seats

  • VIP seating and lounge

  • Permanent restrooms, concessions and merchandising areas

  • Redesigned landscaping

  • Expanded venue entrance

  • New enclosed stage house with improved power facilities 

  • New dressing rooms for performers as well as upgraded backstage support facilities

  • Implementation of lighting and sound systems

  • Improved loading dock and bus parking

  • Elevator and ramp access to lawn seating

  • Box office 

“The Brackenridge Park Conservancy believes the time is right for the reactivation of the historic amphitheater,” said Chair of the Brackenridge Park Conservancy Board Joe Calvert.

Credit: OTJ Architects
Credit: OTJ Architects
Credit: OTJ Architects

The estimated total cost of the renovation is expected to be approximately $61.7 million with an economic impact of $239 million in the first ten years, the release says. 

The project is also estimated to create 969 full-time construction jobs and the theater itself would create approximately 171 full-time positions. 

The project will be financed by a combination of public and private sources, philanthropic funds, tax credit equity and venue operations. 

Public meetings to discuss the future of the Sunken Garden Theater will begin taking place in the coming months. For more information on the Sunken Garden Theater renovation visit the Brackenridge Park Conservancy’s website.

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