Renzo Piano Building Workshop selects Sarasota-based Sweet Sparkman Architects for new performing arts center

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Florida Construction News staff writer

After evaluating about 30 candidates for the role of Architect of Record for a new performing arts center in Sarasota, Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) has selected Sweet Sparkman Architects.

Sarasota Performing Arts Foundation and City of Sarasota selected RPBW in June 2023 as Design Architect for the project which will be built in The Bay, Sarasota’s signature public park.

“We selected Sweet Sparkman not only for their proficiency and local knowledge of the construction industry, but for their spirit, and the team they put forth,” Renzo Piano Building Workshop said in a statement. “We see them as our partners in this adventure and we strongly believe their qualities, values and experience will be key to the project’s success.”

Based in Sarasota, Sweet Sparkman Architects has been practicing for 22 years, completing completed cultural and community projects including The Bay, Center for Asian Art at the Ringling Museum of Art, Ringling College of Art and Design: Basch Visual Arts Center, Asolo Repertory Theatre Koski Center Campus, Venice Theatre, and Siesta Key Park and Pavilion.

“We selected Sweet Sparkman not only for their proficiency and local knowledge of the construction industry, but for their spirit, and the team they put forth. We see them as our partners in this adventure, and we strongly believe their qualities, values, and experience will be key to the project’s success.”

The new center will cost about $275 million, funded by a 50-50 public-private partnership between the government (including Tax Increment Funding) and fundraising.

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