Maryland Plans For New Fillmore

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Maryland’s Montgomery County Council signed off on legislation yesterday that is expected to provide an estimated $800,000 in tax breaks over ten years to the operators of a planned music hall in the area.

Maryland’s Montgomery County Council signed off on legislation yesterday that is expected to provide an estimated $800,000 in tax breaks over ten years to the operators of a planned music hall in the area. With little debate, the council voted 8 to 1 to approve the measure, which would extend a property tax credit to new buildings used for arts or entertainment in the area and other Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C., according to yesterday’s Washington Post.

So, where’s the money going? You guessed it – as if they hadn’t been catching headlines enough recently, owners of Los-Angeles based Live Nation will receive the tax breaks for the music hall. Live Nation execs intend for the new venue to carry the Fillmore brand and to be ready for performances by mid-2010.

The property is to be donated by the current owner, Silver-Spring based Lee Development Group, and it will land in the hands of the Montgomery County government, though Live Nation will be in charge of operating the new venue. On land valued at $3.5 million currently sits a long-vacant J.C. Penney store, and in addition to the new Live Nation joint, Lee Development is receiving county permission to build out the vacant two-acre parcel of land behind the music hall site.

Some have argued that the project shouldn’t be built with public financing, but others believe the credits will help solidify the area as an arts destination. The $80,000-a-year in property tax credits, according to supporters, should be viewed in the context of the $1.1 million in state and local revenue the new Fillmore is expected to generate.

Either way, this East Coast Fillmore sounds pretty sweet. I wonder who the opening act will be…



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