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Crown Event Center Committee receives project update

By Staff Report, posted Jan 17, 2024 on

Digital rendering of the new Crown Event Center provided by Cumberland County

The Cumberland County Board of Commissioners Crown Event Center Committee received an update Tuesday, Jan. 16, from the Project Delivery Team on the status of the new Crown Event Center. The new space which will be constructed in Downtown Fayetteville in front of the Judge E. Maurice Braswell Cumberland County Courthouse and will replace the existing Crown Theatre and Arena.

Tuesday’s update follows the Committee’s recommendation and Board of Commissioners’ approval of a building program, project budget and Conceptual Design in May 2023, Schematic Design in August 2023 and the addition of TA Loving/Metcon as Construction Manager at Risk for the project in September 2023.

Matt DeSilver, Area Manager for MBP Carolinas, gave the presentation, noting that following the addition of TA Loving/Metcon to the PDT, the team began reconciling the project cost and schedule, which resulted in an updated cost estimate for the project of $163.5 million and an estimated completion date of December 2026. The Board previously approved a total project budget of $131.7 million and anticipated the new facility would open on Nov. 1, 2025, which is when the existing Crown Theatre and Arena are set to close. The previously-approved budget was based on cost estimates provided by professional cost estimators working with MBP and EwingCole.

DeSilver said the cost increase is partly attributable to an increase in the building’s program from the Board’s approved program of 131,500 square feet to 156,000 square feet during the Schematic Design process, as well as due to unprecedented national and regional market escalation, particularly related to the structural, mechanical, plumbing and electrical trades. He said the issue could not be confirmed until TA Loving/Metcon was brought on board to confirm pricing and schedule.

Once the issue was discovered, DeSilver said the PDT identified $7.6 million in cost reductions that would not require redesign or significantly affect the facility’s operations or further lengthen the project schedule, bringing the estimated project cost to $155.9 million. He said additional cost-reduction opportunities have been identified but would require additional time for the architect to redesign the facility, further delaying the project’s completion.

Following a closed session to preserve Attorney-Client Privilege, the Committee voted unanimously to direct the PDT to present a redesigned facility within a total project budget of $145 million by Monday, Jan. 22 at 1 p.m., and for fees paid to the owner’s representative and architect to be based on the Board-approved program of 131,500 square feet and previously-approved project budget of $131.7 million.

The Crown Event Center Committee will meet again next Tuesday, Jan. 23 at 1 p.m. in Room 564 of the Judge E. Maurice Braswell Cumberland County Courthouse at 117 Dick Street, Fayetteville.

For additional information on the Crown Event Center project visit

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