Utrecht council to blame for financial woes of new music centre

tivoliUtrecht council has only itself to blame for the financial problems at the new music centre TivoliVredenburg, according to the city’s auditors.

The council was far too optimistic about the building and exploitation costs of the centre which is at the heart of the new development around the main railway station, the auditors say.

TivoliVredenburg, with auditoria for pop, jazz and classical music, has accrued a budget deficit of €10m since its opening in June 2014. Construction costs were put at €98.6m in 2006, but the final cost was €156m. The overrun is partly financied by future income from renting out the auditoria, according to the Volkskrant.

‘There was too much optimism that a bigger music centre could be run with the same level of subsidy at the start of the project,’ the audit office said in its report.

An additional problem is that such an expensive building needs to charge a high rent, much higher than other comparable music centres charge.

Utrecht council has accepted the criticism and will make an immediate plan to have the building used more intensively and to close the budget deficit, the paper said.

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