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Contact: Shannan Marcak, 928-638-7958
Grand Canyon, Ariz. – The Grand Canyon Visitor Center, the National Park Service’s primary visitor contact station on the South Rim, will soon be getting an addition – a theater for the park’s interpretive orientation film which is currently in production.
Within the next two weeks, Loven Contracting, Inc. of Flagstaff, Arizona will begin construction of a 3,400 square foot theater with seating for more than 200 people. The theater will include an array of photovoltaic panels on the roof that will offset the cost of electrical services for the building and a water catchment system that will allow the use of rain water for the watering of plants in the visitor center plaza.
Once completed, visitors will enter the theater through the Grand Canyon Visitor Center, where new interpretive exhibits are planned for the future. According to park Chief of Interpretation and Education Judy Hellmich-Bryan, the film and future exhibits will “greatly improve the experience of the park’s millions of visitors by providing a better understanding of Grand Canyon’s natural and cultural resources and the mission of the National Park Service.”
During construction, it will be necessary to fence off a portion of the walkway in the immediate vicinity of the Visitor Center in order to provide a safe and secure work area. Pedestrian detours will be appropriately signed as needed; and the Visitor Center will remain open throughout the project.
Completion of the project is expected by March, 2011.
This $2.35 million construction project is being paid for with funds generated by the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act which authorizes national park sites to reinvest a majority of the entrance and use fees they collect in projects that will enhance on-site visitor services.
For more information on the Visitor Center theater project, please contact Greg MacGregor, park Chief of Project Management at 928-638-7360. To learn more about park construction projects and associated detours and temporary closures, visit the park’s web site at www.nps.gov/grca/parkmgmt/const.htm