The JPR Foundation, which supports Jefferson Public Radio in Ashland, Ore., has big plans – $7 million in big plans, to be exact, reports the Mail Tribune in Medford, Ore. The NPR member station will be moving from a basement at Southern Oregon University into an historic 1910 brick warehouse in Medford that was donated to foundation earlier this month. After renovations, in addition to the pubradio offices and studios, the warehouse will contain the Western States Museum of Broadcasting, a cafe and auditorium. JPR also is closing a deal to buy the Holly Theatre in Medford this spring, with plans to remodel the 1930 building. JPR previously had renovated the Cascade Theatre in Redding, Calif. for its studios there (Current, Aug. 2, 1999).
“Will this be a challenge, and will it be taxing? It will be,” said Ron Kramer, executive director of JPR. He said plans to build a 40,000-square-foot building on the SOU campus were scrapped after estimates came in between $16 million to $20 million – too expensive during a tough economy.