Using Music to Create Community

Can outdoor concerts transform a neglected place into a beloved city center? "Creative placemaking" is trendy now, but Levitt Pavilions, a national non-profit, has been making places vibrant by building outdoor concert venues for seven years now.

Site Specific spoke with Liz Levitt Hirsch, board chair for Levitt Pavilions and the President of the Mortimer & Mimi Levitt Foundation, about the organization's revitalization strategy. "In Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, we helped transform the nation’s largest brownfield — on the grounds of the defunct Bethlehem Steel — into an incredibly vibrant arts campus," says Hirsch in the article. "What was once dirt and weeds and prohibited from use, is now a state-of-the art performance venue and a grassy lawn that the community uses throughout the year. And in Arlington, Texas, the Levitt has brought record-breaking crowds to the once-dormant downtown area. So many people visit the Arlington pavilion each year—over 120,000 people during the concert season alone---that numerous businesses and restaurants have popped up to support the foot traffic. It’s been a boon for the local economy."

Hirsch says that pavilions are currently in development for Denver and Houston.


Full Story: Using Music to Create Community

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