SILVER SPRING, MD (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Promoter Live Nation and their partners the Lee Development Group have set an aggressive timetable for the construction of the Fillmore music club in Silver Spring with a projected September 2011 opening date.
The 28,000-square-foot venue is expected to break ground in October 2010, leaving a scant 11 months for construction, according to plans presented to the community of Silver Spring last month. However, ground breaking is still contingent on Live Nation and LDG securing required approval and building permits for the site from Montgomery County and with the current construction timetable, there is little margin to compensate for any for delays.
According to The Gazette, $8 million refurb plans for the new Fillmore include a three-floor music venue with a general admission capacity of approximately 2,000 people with options for 750 installable seats. The first floor will contain a lobby with a walk-up box office, 2 bars, and the general admission area for the venue. The second floor will have a general admission balcony and space for seating to be added as needed and a basement level will have restrooms and green room facilities for performers.
While the venue would have no built-in parking, a 5-story parking facility has been included as part of a 10-12 story building with office and retail space planned for the lot adjacent to the Fillmore. A nearby hotel is also in the planning phases and these additional projects have been lumped into the Fillmore approval process but will be built at a later time when tenants have been secured and the real estate market improves.
"Instead of taking two years to get through approval and another to get building permits, we could walk into the permitting office once we have a tenant," Bruce Lee of the Lee Development Group told the Gazette, "Montgomery County has a reputation of not being business-friendly and taking too long to go through the process. This allows us to be more competitive because we can move more quickly. It's ridiculous that it usually takes four to five years for a project like this to come to fruition."
Not everyone's entirely excited about the proposed plans. At a public hearing on Feb. 23, Silver Spring residents voiced concerns to developers that ranged from the effects of the project on traffic in the area to worries about excessive revelry by concertgoers.
"You're going to bring very large numbers of people to the club and serving alcohol and then dumping 1,500 to 2,000 people on the streets," one resident said during the hearing.
Planners responded by noting that the venue will not serve alcohol in the final hour of the performance and that a curfew will exist for events at the Fillmore. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers