The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Who really needs a performing arts center?

The untamed noise of a jackhammer, the sight of men in florescent orange t-shirts, and the view of mountainous piles of dirt can finally be over and done with. Well, that is, for the next 90 days.

We no longer have to beware of the bright yellow caution tape rearing our campus walks now that the construction of the new Valley Performing Arts Center has been suspended due to a shortage of state funds. This also means that the piles of dirt will remain there, untouched, until CSUN receives more money.

This predicament leaves two different types of questions lingering. For the people who care about this development, how long until CSUN gets the money from the state so construction can resume?

The answer to this one is easy and quick to respond too. They don’t know. CSUN has been directed by the CSU system to inform contractors to expect a 90-day suspension. That is the equivalent of one semester with a barren field of dirt.

The second question applies to the people who had absolutely no idea what the pile of dirt was even for. What is the point of having a performing arts center anyway? This question is more likely posed by the students of CSUN who may have thought it was a new parking structure (Wouldn’t that be more useful?).

The point is the Valley Performing Arts Center will offer a chance for the community to consume their dose of the arts without traveling to Hollywood or Pasadena to watch a play. It allows the opportunity for more jobs to arise in a time where unemployment is at its peak. We are in a recession, remember?

But that is the real point right there. We are in a recession. Why did CSUN choose to start something that inevitably would hit the wrath of the state department? That real answer stays within the administration. The spiel they give us is that the idea to create this center was to enrich the community and allow for easier access to the arts in the San Fernando Valley.

The truth is this: the Valley Performing Arts Center was a concoction created more by the community and the administration at CSUN rather than the students of CSUN really desiring a performing arts center.

‘A resolution by the California State University System pledging basic support for building a performing arts center at each of its campuses, together with great demand among community and University leaders for such a facility, prompted Cal State Northridge to make building the Valley Performing Arts Center part of its master plan as well as a presidential priority’ according to the website.

What should be ‘presidential priority’ is figuring out a way to decrease tuition each semester, and how to save the students money on textbooks. However, that may not be
such a concern for the community.

It is without a doubt that each student at CSUN should embrace the arts and be cultural in that aspect? Yet with a university that lacks so much school spirit, what are the chances that the Valley Performing Arts Center will be fully put to use? Now we have to wait an unknown length of time to get those statistics.

Of course, now that the university has delved into establishing the center for the community, there is no other choice than to finish what was started. The postponement will not only delay this dream to be realized, but cost more money to start up again. Let’s just hope that the state decides to fund the money soon. Actually, let’s pray that America gets out of the recession so people no longer have to witness these kinds of downfall.

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