GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. - Construction should be finished in about three months and the new "20 Monroe Live" venue in downtown Grand Rapids will start offering entertainment.
That is the update from owner Greg Gilmore, who led reporters on a "hard hat tour" through the building Tuesday.
“We will be finished in 90 days and open in early 2017,” says Gilmore. “It’s coming at us really quickly.”
Gilmore is partnering with Live Nation’s House of Blues to bring entertainment to the venue. The venue's "working" title was also announced, 20 Monroe Live.
Organizers say the new venue, a new beer garden and the restaurants, bars and clubs in the BOB next door will provide a “complete experience” for guests.
“We don’t view the concert going experiences as rushing through traffic, going through security, standing in line, going into the show for an hour and a half and then leaving,” explains House of Blues president Ron Bension. “We view it as an entire entertainment evening.”
The owner says 20 Monroe Live says they can move the stage and adjust the room size to accommodate audiences as big as 2,600 people to less than half as large.
“We can bring in very large scale bands as well as small singer-songwriter type events,” says Benison.
20 Monroe Live will being in acts that may not be able to fill Van Andel Arena or aren’t a good fit for DeVos Performance Hall.
“All kinds of tremendous entertainment,” says Gilmore. “It’s always passed Grand Rapids because there wasn’t a venue that bridged the gap between the Van Andel Arena and DeVos Hall. Now we have that venue.”
Gilmore, who owns the BOB entertainment complex and the Gilmore Collection of restaurants in west Michigan, says 20 Monroe Live will also book weddings, festivals, private parties and corporate meetings.
They expect to host at least 200 events per year and hire about 150 employees.
“We are really excited about bringing more entertainment to the city,’ says Benison.
“The city is on fire,” adds Gilmore. “The city that’s on fire made them want to be here.”
(© 2016 WZZM)