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Straz Center gets $25 million for its first major overhaul since opening in 1987

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The plan will increase the Straz Center’s $130 million annual economic impact and will increase workforce development by 20%.

The Tampa City Council, in its capacity as the Community Redevelopment Agency of the City of Tampa, approved $25 million in funding for the Straz Center’s Master Plan, on Thursday.

The funding will be matched by the Straz Center’s private campaign “Boundless,” and will be allocated over a five-year period beginning in 2022.

“We’ll have a brand new campus, open for all in our neighborhood to walk, bike, skate or boat up to any time and be inspired by our Riverwalk, living shoreline, outdoor stages and terraces, and of course, entertainment from artists sharing stories, cultures and traditions from all around," said Straz Center President and CEO Judy Lisi, in a prepared statement.

"This will be the community’s living room where all are welcome – with or without a ticket -- and where all in our community will see themselves reflected.”

Lisi said the plan will increase the Straz Center’s $130 million annual economic impact and will increase workforce development by 20%.

The facility opened in 1987, and this is the first major redesign since that time.

I took my first photography class when I was 11. My stepmom begged a local group to let me into the adults-only class, and armed with a 35 mm disposable camera, I started my journey toward multimedia journalism.