Thomas Wolfe Auditorium set to celebrate 80 years of events this month

On Jan. 8, Thomas Wolfe Auditorium will celebrate its 80th year anniversary of providing a civic home for music, arts, and entertainment in Asheville, beginning a year-long celebration of the venue’s history and plans for potential future development.

In conjunction with this announcement, the City of Asheville will release a draft of conceptual design and budget for the transformation of the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium.  A public information session will take place at 6 p.m. Jan. 15 in Thomas Wolfe Auditorium at the Harrah’s Cherokee Center Asheville, 87 Haywood St. The session will include a presentation of the conceptual design, potential future programming opportunities and a moderated question-and-answer session.

The final report and renderings come approximately 9 months after the City hired Earl Swensson Associates, Inc. (ESA), an architecture firm based in Nashville, Tenn., to complete a stakeholder needs analysis, conceptual design and base budget.  ESA has acted as the lead firm on numerous theater renovation and construction projects, highlighted by the Charleston Gaillard Center in Charleston, S.C. and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center in Nashville, Tenn. 

Parking in the Harrah’s Cherokee  Center Garage will be free of charge — attendees should see staff for a validation ticket at the registration table. The meeting site is a five-minute walk from the ART Transit Station on Coxe Avenue; Routes N and N1 have stops adjacent to the meeting site. Registration is appreciated, but not required to attend the event.  Here is the pre-registration link:

City staff will continue to invite the public to engage in this process as the project moves forward.  A copy of the presentation, Conceptual Design report and full video of the presentation will be available on the project website after the event.  A form allowing public comment will also be available, and that information will be regularly shared with the design team, the public, and City Council. 

For more information, please visit

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