Firms back Charlotte arts campaign

Bank of America, Duke Energy and Wachovia have committed a total of $35 million to a fundraising campaign for the Cultural Facilities Plan of the Arts & Science Council in Charlotte.

The two banks each committed $15 million, while Duke Energy is giving $5 million.

The Facilities Plan calls for a new Center City Mint Museum, renovations to Discovery Place, expansion of the Afro-American Cultural Center, a 1200-seat theater and a new contemporary art museum.

The endowment campaign will fund operating costs for the facilities while construction costs are being considered by the City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County.

The campaign will also raise money for an endowment and operating funds for the Charlotte Symphony and capital for the North Carolina Dance Theatre.

The council expects to announce a total fundraising goal and begin the public phase of the campaign next summer.

Co-chairs of the campaign are Paul Anderson, chairman and CEO of Duke Energy; Ken Lewis, chairman and CEO of Bank of America; and Ken Thompson, chairman and CEO of Wachovia.

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