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Construction Begins On New Arts Center

MANASSAS, VA (AP)- After years of planning, construction has begun on a $60 million performing arts center at George Mason University's Manassas campus.

The 86,000-square-foot Hylton Performing Arts Center is scheduled to open in spring 2010.

The center is being funded by the university, Prince William County, the city of Manassas and through state grants and private donations. The center also has an ongoing campaign for a $15 million endowment to help with operating expenses; nearly $10 million has been collected.

The arts center will include a 1,166-seat main performance hall, a 300-seat family theater and an art gallery that will showcase local artists.

Local groups such as the Manassas Ballet Theatre and the Prince William Symphony Orchestra are expected to use center.