Join the Conversation on the City of Eau Claire’s Online Forum
December 3, 2013
The City of Eau Claire, through its online forum Eau Claire Electronic Conversation (E2C2), is asking residents to answer the question: What do you think about the Confluence Project?
In October, the City Council adopted a resolution to pledge $5,000,000 to the Community Arts Center portion of the Confluence Project, which includes a mixed-use building for commercial/retail space and university housing. The City’s question addresses the entire Confluence Project, not just funding of the Community Arts Center.
Please take a few minutes right now to answer the question at www.EauClaireWI.gov/E2C2.
As a Community for the Confluence, it is important that everyone’s voice be heard. The City’s E2C2 survey is a great opportunity to express your opinion on the Confluence Project.
Once you have registered, you will have the opportunity to answer three question-comments regarding the Confluence Project:
1. Are you in favor of the Confluence Project?
2. If you wish, please add an explanation.
3. Do you have any concerns with the project?
Comments made by registered participants can be reviewed under the General Public section. City officials plan to incorporate E2C2 comments into their decision-making process.
Please go to www.EauClaireWI.gov/E2C2 and let your voice be heard! As of Tuesday, December 3 at 3:00 p.m., there were only 41 comments in general public responses. If we speak up as a Community for the Confluence, we can elevate this conversation into the hundreds, into the thousands!
Please share the E2C2 link with friends, family and co-workers. Thank you!December 3, 2013
UW-Eau Claire Jazz Ensemble I concert at Mondovi High School
December 2, 2013
Community for the Confluence in collaboration with the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council and University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire will present the UW-Eau Claire Jazz Ensemble I in concert on Tuesday, December 10, 7:00 p.m. at Mondovi High School, 337 N Jackson Street.
The concert is part of Community for the Confluence’s community outreach in support of arts development throughout the Chippewa Valley. UW-Eau Claire’s Jazz Ensemble I will celebrate American Big Band music with selections from Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, the Dorsey brothers and Duke Ellington.
Tickets are $3.00 general admission, available for purchase at the door the night of the concert. Mondovi Band Boosters will be selling refreshments, and space will be available for dancing.
UW-Eau Claire’s Jazz Ensemble I is a six-time winner of Down Beat’s “Best College Big Band” award and has been nominated for a Grammy twice. The New York Times has called UW-Eau Claire jazz program one of the most “well regarded in the country.”
“The Big Band Era was one of the most memorable musical eras in American history,” said Robert Baca, Director of Jazz Ensemble I. “It was a time when swing was the thing. The Big Bands – Benny ‘The King of Swing” Goodman, The Dorsey brothers, Glenn Miller, and a host of others – they had people doin’ the Lindy Hop in every ballroom and dance hall across America. Now a generation is discovering that excitement of big band jazz.”
Please join us for a musical journey celebrating the songs, events and people of the Big Band Era. For more information, contact Community for the Confluence at 715-832-2787 ext. 101 or by email to contact@
communityfortheconfluence.org.December 2, 2013
Building Momentum as a Community Gathered Together
November 22, 2013
You may ask yourself: why is it so important for me to attend the Confluence Pep Rally? We have busy lives—kids, work, shopping, laundry, volunteering—and it’s Thanksgiving week with family coming for dinner. One hour is precious time to catch up or get ahead.
This is exactly why we need you at the Pep Rally. We can’t lose another minute building momentum in support of the Confluence Project. Your voice—the voices of your friends, family, co-workers—must be heard above the hubbub of opposition. As a group, as a community gathered together, the truth will be heard loud and clear!
Opposition to the Confluence Project isn’t just trying to stop this singular project. They want “any physical construction of any municipally financed (in whole and in part) project which includes a building planned for dramatic, musical, or artistic performances, requiring a capital expenditure…of one million dollars or more” to be submitted for public vote as a binding referendum. Thus placing a strangle hold on arts facility development in the City of Eau Claire.
As a Community for the Confluence, we stand together for economic development through arts and culture. Eau Claire is blessed to have a diverse and innovative arts community. Our elected City representatives understand how to use economic development tools to build an arts district within a tax increment financing (TIF) district. Your co-workers, friends and family probably don’t understand the economic dynamics of tax increment financing, or that TIF districts do not increase taxes. Our elected representatives do understand how a TIF district can be used to fully fund the City’s capital expenditure for the Confluence Community Arts Center.
Bring them to the Pep Rally, together let’s show broad, diverse support for the arts. Let’s talk about how the Confluence Project will help grow and sustain our innovative arts community. How the University and the City are making an investment in the rejuvenation of our downtown.
Take an hour out of your day, buy the arts a beer and enjoy the camaraderie of Community for the Confluence. Together we can make this unique public-private opportunity to revitalize downtown happen now. Come to the Pep Rally!
Community for the Confluence Pep Rally
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
316 Eau Claire Street
Downtown Eau ClaireNovember 22, 2013
First Ever Community for the Confluence Pep Rally
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
You’ve signed up, emailed and followed the progress of the Confluence Project. Now it’s time to rally for the Confluence as one BIG group! It is time to present the many faces of the Confluence Project, the multitudes who support and participate in the Chippewa Valley’s innovative arts community.
Join us at the State Theater on Tuesday, November 26 at 5:00 p.m. for the first ever Community for the Confluence Pep Rally!
Mark your calendar, because we need a little face time with YOU! Special guests, live music and a Community for the Confluence group photograph. Opponents of the Confluence Project have stated there isn’t broad, diverse community support for the project. We need EVERYONE to come to the State Theatre to prove the naysayers are wrong. Come to the Community for the Confluence Rally, and show your support for the future of the arts in the Chippewa Valley.
Wear your Confluence blue, bring your co-workers, friends and family BE SEEN in support of the Confluence Project. Don’t miss this event! Come early, come late, but come to the rally!
Community for the Confluence Pep Rally
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
316 Eau Claire Street
Downtown Eau Claire
715-832-2787November 12, 2013
Thursday, November 7, 2013
Now that the City of Eau Claire has pledge $5 million to the Confluence Project, it’s time for the Eau Claire County Board of Supervisors to help do what no single entity or constituency can do on its own. An investment of $5 million from Eau Claire County will secure the future of the project, the revitalization of downtown, renewed job creation, and an innovative arts community across the region.
The Community Arts Center at the Confluence represents different things to different people:
- To UW-Eau Claire, it is an opportunity to support its academic mission in an area of strength
- To the arts community, it’s a home from which to grow and prosper
- To many area residents, it’s a quality of life issue
- To employers, it’s a tool to recruit and retain employees
- To local government, it’s an economic development initiative
- To all, it’s a demonstration of the power of collaboration
Why should Eau Claire County support this project?
Currently, city and county governments have state-imposed limits on the amount of increased property taxes they can collect annually. Local government must rely on tax base growth to sustain current programs and address new challenges. Eau Claire County’s $5 million share of the Community Arts Center will result in a $77 million investment in the community. Which will generate additional property, room and sales tax revenues for the City and County.
Eau Claire County is highly dependent on what happens within the City of Eau Claire:
- More than 50% of the County’s property tax base is within the City
- An overwhelming majority of activities that generate sales tax happen within the City
- High percentage of existing jobs are located within the City
- Projected job growth is expected to occur within the City
Value of operational collaboration between County and City has been demonstrated across the nation.
The product of collaboration is the efficient and responsible use of government resources. The new economic development standard is based on a merging of State, County, City and private resources to achieve growth. It is essential for Eau Claire County to join with the City and State to invest in the extraordinary potential of the Confluence Project.
Let Your Voice be Heard!
Contacting your elected officials is an important part of this process. They need to know LOTS of people support the Confluence Project, so every email is very important. Please take a moment to email the Eau Claire County Board of Supervisors. Ask them to collaborate with the City and support the Confluence Project with a $5 million investment. Not sure what to say? Sample emails are available at Tools & Resources.
Eau Claire County Board of Supervisors Email Addresses:
firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Email Addresses separate by semi-colon for Outlook Users:
email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com;November 7, 2013
Community inspiration is needed for a special placemaking project in downtown Eau Claire
Friday, November 1, 2013
Eau Claire City Council Representative Catherine Emmanuelle invites you to join a team of citizens working together to help plan the new downtown public plaza. The group is working with the West Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission to use placemaking theory as a civic engagement tool for citizens to help plan the public plaza. Placemaking is the planning, design and management of public spaces. It involves listening to and asking questions of the people who live, work and play in a particular space to determine their needs and aspirations. This means YOU get to have a say in how the public plaza is designed!
For information on the Haymarket Plaza placemaking project, check out Volume One’s article by Thom Fountain at: http://volumeone.org/articles/2013/10/23/6269_placemaking_the_plaza
There is no cost to participate, as the project is 100% locally funded through donations. Advance registration is necessary. Ideal people to be a part of the planning are those who love downtown Eau Claire, want to be a part of a forward-thinking Eau Claire, and want to see another public park success in the heart of our city.
Monday, November 4 is the deadline to be a part of the planning process.
Register online today at: www.wcwrpc.org.
Placemaking Haymarket Plaza meeting schedule:
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
The Plus (Pizza Plus)
208 S. Barstow Street
Saturday, November 9, 2013
9:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
The Plus (Pizza Plus)
208 S. Barstow StreetNovember 1, 2013
Our citizen-led group is now joining forces with the official Confluence Campaign to better serve the community.
Tuesday October 29, 2013
We have an important announcement about our group, Community for the Confluence. This effort started as a grassroots campaign of people who were not directly a part of the Confluence Project – namely, the staff of Volume One and some friends – and we thank them for getting us started. Our group believed a development like this was good for the future of our community, so we tried to make some things happen and help out where we could. And thanks to you, it worked! Hundreds of you signed on to our effort, attended meetings, sent emails, and made phone calls. Eau Claire City Council has now made a $5 million commitment to the project and it’s time for things to shift gears and get serious. And we’re hoping you’ll help us take this community movement to the next level.
So, what’s new? Well, to make sure citizens have a constant flow of updates and information on the Project, Community for the Confluence will now be collaborating with the official Confluence Campaign online and in the community. This means the Eau Claire Regional Arts Council, UW-Eau Claire, Commonweal Development, BluGold Real Estate, and supportive citizens will be using this channel to communicate with you as one cohesive voice for the Confluence Project. That basically means you’ll get more in-depth information from us faster, and you’ll be given more opportunities to make a difference.
To be clear, the next biggest challenge to the success of the Confluence Project is raising the funds to make it a reality – but we know Eau Claire is up to that challenge. It will take a combination of continued advocacy and financial gifts to get us there, so every effort from every person counts. And so does your help in spreading the word about this important community movement and its goals.
Thank you again for your interest and involvement thus far. It’s exciting to see the community rally around this exciting project. Together we can make an enormously positive impact on the city, county, and region, and build a future we can all be proud of.October 29, 2013
It’s critical you join us on Monday at 7pm to support the Confluence Project.
Friday October 18, 2013
It doesn’t take a referendum to make your voice heard in Eau Claire. Bring a friend and stand up for our community’s future at the Eau Claire City Council Public Hearing on Monday, October 21 at 7pm to say NO to the holding of a referendum and YES to committing $5 million to the Confluence Project.
A referendum is not appropriate for the Confluence Project. This is an important strategic decision for the City Council. It requires an understanding of tax base growth to support local governmental services; an awareness of TIF financing and the value of employing such a mechanism to relieve the taxpayer of the general fund borrowing impacts.
The City Council has worked diligently over the past year to fully understand how unique the Confluence Project really is, and how difficult it would be to design and attract capital for an alternative plan. The project provides the City of Eau Claire with an opportunity to redevelop downtown and generate highly essential property, room and sales tax revenues. It’s an economic development win for everyone.
A referendum is a dangerous delay tactic; a lengthy and unnecessary wait that puts the entire project at risk. We cannot let the obstinate voices of a tiny minority stop our community from moving forward towards a better future.
Please join us on Monday, and say NO to the holding of a referendum and YES to the Confluence Project. And, spread the word via email, Facebook, or any way possible.
Eau Claire City Council Public Hearing on the Confluence Project
Monday, October 21, 2013, 7pm
Council Chamber, City Hall
203 S. Farwell Street
Eau Claire, Wisconsin 54701October 18, 2013
Vernon, Halmstad, and Chancellor Schmidt tout the enormous value of the Confluence Project in major press event
Friday September 20, 2013
September 19 was a big day for the Confluence Project as a special press conference was held inside the Volume One Gallery featuring Grammy award winning local musician Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver, Volcano Choir, etc),
JAMF Software founder Zach Halmstad, and UWEC Chancellor Dr. James Schmidt gathered to discuss the project and its many benefits to the Eau Claire community.
Vernon and Halmstad also announced themselves as honorary co-chairs of the fundraising committee, which has already raised $3.5 million.
Check out these media links below for the full story:September 20, 2013
July 23, 2013
What kind of positive economic impact will the Confluence Project have for the community? VenuWorks, an Iowa-based consulting firm, was hired by the Confluence partners to answer that question. The group’s report, which was released in May, highlights the positive impact the Confluence Project would have on Eau Claire’s economy: In its first year of operation, the Confluence would create $4.5 million in economic activity, the study estimated. In addition, because private, taxable development would be part of the project, in the Confluence’s first three years of operation the city would gain a total of $1.1 million in new tax revenue while the county would gain a total of $444,000. That means more money for city and county programs that benefit the entire community, as well as less demand for taxes from other homeowners and businesses.
The study found other economic benefits for residents and taxpayers as well. In the Confluence Project’s first decade, it is estimated to increase city room tax revenue by $904,000, to boost county sales tax revenue by $1.8 million, and to expand state sales tax revenue by $18 million. And in addition to boosting revenue, the project would also create jobs, including an estimated 525 construction jobs, 141 jobs in new businesses by helping revitalize the downtown, and 40 jobs in the arts and culture sector.July 23, 2013
July 16, 2013
The council work session held at City Hall on Monday, July 15 was attended by dozens of supporters of the project. Lead developer of the project, Dan Clumpner, of Commonweal Development, took the lead in getting the council up to speed on where the project has been and where it currently sits.
Partway through the meeting, council President Kerry Kincaid opened the floor for comments from the public. People that spoke in favor of the Confluence Project outweighed detractors by more than 3 to 1, but in attendance it appeared as though there were several times more people there for it than against.
In addition to energized citizens, people spoke in favor of the project from the Chamber of Commerce and JAMF Software, plus, the Chancellor of UWEC, and leaders from several arts organizations including Eau Claire Regional Arts Center, the Chippewa Valley Museum, and Eau Claire Jazz just to name a few.
This was a great step in the process, stay tuned for the next meeting and further developments.July 16, 2013
July 9, 2013
The Confluence Project — which has attracted support, financial and otherwise, from many local groups and leaders — still needs final approval from the Eau Claire City Council to become reality.
The next step in that process will be a council work session at 4 p.m. on Monday, July 15, in the Council Chamber at City Hall, 203 S. Farwell St. At the meeting, the council will review the results of an economic study of the Confluence Project that was released in May.
The study by the consulting firm VenuWorks found that, among other things, the Confluence would create $4.5 million in economic activity in its first year alone. The council meeting is a work session, but citizens are still welcome and encouraged to attend, and there will be time for public testimony.
A show of support by community residents will demonstrate the excitement the Confluence Project has created. Plus, if you’re among the first few dozen supporters to show up, you’ll get a cool T-shirt to wear, courtesy of Community for the Confluence!July 9, 2013
July 7, 2013
A part of the City’s investment in this project will go towards the creation of a public plaza right at the confluence of the Eau Claire and Chippewa Rivers. The yet-to-be-designed plaza would be situated between the public arts center and the privately owned housing/commercial building with restaurants and retail.
While Eau Claire is rich in green parks, what we do not have is a “plaza” space. Plazas are more city-based gathering spaces that are less like parks and more like a town square. While there can certainly be trees and vegetation, they are more often covered in pavers and cobblestone than the grasses common in parks. This gives them a different sort of functionality for civic life than parks.
Plazas can be amazing places for city life to take hold on a daily basis, or for special events and festivals. Things that COULD be included in a plaza on this location include:
- free public wi-fi
- benches, chairs, tables
- decorative and functional lighting
- public art
- splash pad for kids
- kubb pitch area
- a landing to the water
- sidewalk vendors
- speaker system
- readily available power
- and much more!
Stay tuned to local media for announcements about how you could play a role in helping plan and design a public plaza on our city’s two rivers.July 7, 2013
In the News
It’s Official: Eau Claire’s New Downtown Arts Center Has a Name
VolumeOne – February 16, 2018
Trio donate $5M, name art center
Leader-Telegram – February 16, 2018
Naming rights sold for Confluence Arts Center
WEAU – February 16, 2018
Naming rights to Eau Claire Confluence Arts Center unveiled
WQOW – February 16, 2018
Confluence Arts Center: Newly hired artistic director has big, splashy, intimate plans for center’s first season in 2018-19
Leader-Telegram – February 2, 2018
EXCLUSIVE: Backstage look at Eau Claire’s Confluence Arts
WQOW – January 26, 2018
Sizable donation gifted to Eau Claire Confluence project
WEAU – January 11, 2018
Inside Eau Claire’s Confluence Arts Center
WEAU – December 20, 2017
Fill-in lead: Jason Jon Anderson is confident he’s right person to step in to lead Confluence Arts Center to its destiny as centerpiece of revitalized downtown Eau Claire
Leader-Telegram – November 3, 2017
UWEC Grad Will Hit Ground Running as Confluence Arts Center Director
VolumeOne – June 29, 2017
Ashley Furniture makes $25,000 donation to Confluence Arts Center
WQOW – February 20, 2017
Ceremonial start of the Confluence Arts Center construction
Leader-Telegram – October 7, 2016
Xcel donates $250,000 to Confluence Project
Leader-Telegram – May 17, 2016
Xcel Energy announces $250,000 donation to Confluence Arts Center
WEAU – May 17, 2016
WEAU – Mar 22, 2016
Eau Claire City Council to vote on arts center design
Leader Telegram – Mar 22, 2016
Public meeting held for Confluence Arts Center
WEAU – Mar 22, 2016
Arts center, UW-EC plans reach City Council
Leader Telegram – Mar 19, 2016
Plan Commission approves arts center site plan
Leader Telegram – Mar 15, 2016
Confluence Project: Open bids, closed meetings
Leader Telegram – Mar 9, 2016
Transfer of Confluence property made
WEAU – Mar 8, 2016
Confluence Arts Center board hires auditing firm, construction manager
Leader Telegram – March 8, 2016
Arts center transparency touchy subject
Leader Telegram – Feb 17, 2016
This is what’s possible when we pull together
Leader Telegram – Feb 10, 2016
Stakeholders release Confluence Arts Center Plans
WEAU – Feb 9, 2016
Leader Telegram – Feb 6, 2016
Leader Telegram – Feb 6, 2016
Leader Telegram – Jan 31, 2016
Leader Telegram – Dec 18, 2015
Leader Telegram – Dec 18, 2015
WEAU – Dec 16, 2015
WQOW – Dec 14, 2015
WEAU – Dec 4, 2015
Volume One – Nov 25, 2015
Leader Telegram – Oct 12, 2015
WEAU – Sep 15, 2015
Leader Telegram – Sep 15, 2015
WQOW – Aug 11, 2015
Leader Telegram – Aug 1, 2015
Leader Telegram – July 19, 2015
WEAU – Jul 13, 2015
Leader Telegram – May 29, 2015
WEAU – May 29, 2015
Leader Telegram – May 29, 2015
Milwaukee Business News – May 28, 2015
Leader Telegram – May 27, 2015
Volume One – Apr 13, 2015
Volume One – Apr 1, 2015
WPR – Mar 30, 2015
Leader Telegram – Mar 23, 2015
Leader Telegram – Mar 16, 2015
Leader Telegram – Mar 12, 2015
Volume One – Mar 10, 2015
WQOW – Mar 10, 2015
Leader Telegram – Feb 15, 2015
Leader Telegram – Feb 12, 2015
WEAU – Feb 7, 2015
Leader Telegram – Feb 2, 2015
Leader Telegram – Jan 31, 2015
Leader Telegram – Jan 28, 2015
WEAU – Jan 29, 2015
Volume One – Jan 28, 2015
Leader Telegram – Jan 28, 2015
WQOW – Jan 28, 2015
Leader Telegram – Jan 15, 2015
Leader Telegram – Dec 29, 2014
WEAU – Dec 17, 2014
WQOW – Dec 16, 2014
Leader Telegram – Dec 11, 2014
Volume One – Dec 11, 2014
Volume One – Nov 27, 2014
Leader Telegram – Nov 25, 2014
Leader Telegram – Nov 19, 2014
Leader Telegram – Nov 16, 2014
Chippewa Valley Business Report – Oct 22, 2014
WQOW – Oct 10, 2014
Leader Telegram – Sep 24, 2014
Leader Telegram – Sep 22, 2014
WEAU – Sep 22, 2014
WEAU – Sep 19, 2014
WEAU – Sep 9, 2014
WQOW – Aug 26, 2014
Leader Telegram – Aug 21, 2014
WEAU – Aug 20, 2014
Chippewa Herald – Aug 18, 2014
Leader Telegram – Aug 17, 2014
Chippewa Valley Business Report – Jul 28, 2014
WEAU – Jul 25, 2014
Volume One – Jul 23, 2014
Volume One – Jun 23, 2014
Volume One – May 15, 2014
Leader Telegram – May 7, 2014
Leader Telegram – April 10, 2014
Volume One – April 2, 2014
WQOW TV-18 – April 2, 2014
Wisconsin Public Radio – March 31, 2014
Volume One – March 27, 2014
Leader Telegram – February 2, 2014
Leader Telegram – January 31, 2014
Leader Telegram – January 28, 2014
WQOW TV-18 – January 22, 2014
Leader Telegram – January 21, 2014
WQOW TV-18 – January 16, 2014
Leader Telegram – January 10, 2014
Leader Telegram – January 9, 2014
Leader Telegram – June 23, 2013
Will This Venue Work?
Volume One Magazine – May 22, 2013
JAMF Software – May 20, 2013
Volume One Magazine – Mar. 13, 2013
UW-Eau Claire Student Senate – Nov. 19, 2012
Capital Planning & Budget Committee – Oct. 4, 2012
Leader Telegram – Sep. 19, 2012
Leader Telegram – May 23, 2012
Leader Telegram – May 16, 2012
Volume One Magazine – May 15, 2012