Portsmouth Council throws an additional $2 million at damaged pavilion

Portsmouth

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to spend an additional $2 million from its reserves in order to get the Atlantic Union Bank Pavilion back to operating condition.

This is on top of the $2.4 million already approved last year to fix the waterfront entertainment venue.

The pavilion has had no cover since May 2018 when engineers discovered a big problem with the main support that holds it all up. Water caused a 10-foot crack in a main mast support.  

At a work session last month, Chief City Engineer James Wright said the mast replacement is complete. The process of installing the canopy is underway. He said the goal now is to have all 13 panels in place by the end of November.

City engineers had hoped to have repair work completed by the start of the 2019 summer concert season — but announced this spring the venue would remain closed for the season.

IMGoing, which operates the pavilion, is suing the city for $4.5 million claiming it lost millions of dollars due to the city’s inability to get the pavilion ready for the summer season.

City Attorney Solomon Ashby said the city is looking to claim the damage on insurance.

This isn’t the first time the pavilion’s structure has had issues. Back in 2003, Hurricane Isabel shredded the pavilion’s single membrane canopy, so the city replaced it with the 13-piece canopy, so if there were a tear you wouldn’t have to replace the whole canopy.

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