Center in the Square Close to Opening With Many New Attractions - FOX 21/27 WFXR Roanoke/WWCW Lynchburg News, Weather

Center in the Square Close to Opening With Many New Attractions

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The re-opening of Center in the Square in Downtown Roanoke is right around the corner.

It's a proud moment for Roanoke native David Bandy, who's finally seeing his designs come to life in the newly renovated Center in the Square.

"When I was a kid in public school, to be an architect was a dream," says Bandy, president of Spectrum Design.

His dream is taking shape six years after Spectrum Design beat out much larger, out-of-state companies for the contract to revamp the center.

"To be able to contribute to the community with a project like this is really kind of unimaginable," Bandy says.

The president and general manager of Center in the Square, Dr. James Sears, honored Bandy's firm's hard work, along with several donors and city leaders, who each had a hand in the re-vamped center.

"We're elated it's come together like it has," Sears says. "The dreams and imaginations so many of us had are actually now reality."

There are tons of new attractions, including a live coral reef aquarium, a butterfly garden, and a regional box office. At the box office, you can get tickets, not just for events at the center, but activities across the area.

"When we started this project, we said we need to be on the cutting edge of arts and culture and education and we thought about what we don't have in this western Virginia region," Sears says.

Sears say in the center's 27-year history, more than 10 million visitors have come through the doors. He says he hopes to double that number in years to come.

The center plans to open officially May 18.