Two Waterville natives have teamed up with Hunter Brucks, president and CEO of HB Concerts Inc., to plan a state-of-the-art, open-air amphitheater on South Pray Boulevard near the US 24/SR 64 interchange.
John Henry, founder of Third Street Cigar Records and vice president of HBC Management, and Chris Campbell, president and CEO of Devonshire REIT, are joining Brucks – a concert promoter, producer and operator of HBC Manage-ment and HB Concerts – on the proposed concert venue.
The plans call for operating at 7,500 capacity with the capability of seating 9,375 for special marquee shows. The venue will feature 5,200 fixed stadium-style seats and 22 to 25 box suites. The arena is designed to include a lifted berm grass lawn area for general admission seating, permanent restrooms, concessions and merchandise areas to allow patrons easy access to and from the seating areas.
On-site parking for 2,500 cars, including ADA-compliant access, will allow patrons a one-stop destination. Artists will enjoy high-quality green rooms, catering and production offices. Arena-style staging and massive portrait-size video screens with touring audio and lighting rigs will allow every seat in the house a fantastic and memorable experience.
The project, named Waterville Landing Enter-tainment District, will be located near the intersection of US 24 and SR 64, on the west side of South Pray Boulevard, just beyond the 25 acres of undeveloped land that Meijer purchased in 2015.
“I’m super-excited about coming to the area,” said Brucks, who has designed six similar amphitheaters throughout the United States. He compared the venue to Pine Knob in Michigan and Blossom in the Cleveland area.
Contractors for the project include local companies Mosser Construction, DGL Consulting Engineers, Poggemeyer Design Group and Devonshire Develop-ment Group.
Plans include efficient and tested traffic strategies, a comprehensive staffing plan – including well-trained and professional security – and an agreement to abide by all city ordinances, including noise and curfew. According to city code, outdoor concerts would need to end at 11:00 p.m.
“It is imperative to the HB Concerts business model that residents feel the venue enriches the fabric of the community and that concert guests, as well as the surrounding areas, feel safe and secure,” Henry said.
The property is zoned commercial and would require a conditional use permit. During its June 27 meeting, Waterville City Council referred the matter to the Planning Commission, which originally planned to review the application during its Monday, July 11 meeting. However, on July 5, city officials decided to postpone the meeting in order to get more information on the proposed amphitheater. A new date was not set as of The Mirror’s deadline.