Positively Philadelphia: Anonymous donor brings major change to the Kimmel Center

Lauren Lipton
July 14, 2019 - 4:00 am

Lauren Lipton/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — There is a major change coming to the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts and we can all thank a 92-year-old patron.  

"The largest and most notable one for the Kimmel Center building is that we are adding a series of escalators. We recognize that this is something that everyone has been calling for since the center opened," said Ross Richards, senior vice president for facilities and operations at the Kimmel Center.

Richards says the donor wishes to remain anonymous.

"She has been a longtime supporter of the orchestra and other activities at the Kimmel center and she felt very strongly about this, and made this a very focused grant,” he explained.

Courtesy of the Kimmel Center

Now this may not sound like it, but this is a big deal. There are a number of tiers at the Kimmel Center and with only several small elevators many had difficulty navigating the many steps.

"It's one escalator to each level so it zigs one direction and zags back to the other," he said.

This should be finished by the fall and there are many other improvements not only to the Kimmel, but the Academy of Music where all the seats are being replaced.

"The seats were well known to be cramped and very uncomfortable," Richards added.