CHAUTAUQUA – An initial assessment of the northeast portion of the Amphitheater at Chautauqua Institution points to an isolated column failure.
According to Chautauqua officials, a “tree-top” column near Gate 1 failed shortly after noon on Wednesday.
Outside engineers were called to the location late last week to conduct a more comprehensive analysis and crews have moved a large crane in place to carry the load of the failed column. Access to the Amp and Roberts and Bowman avenues remains restricted to appropriate personnel only.
Some additional information for clarification:
- Snowfall totals this season have been at the historic average and below 2014’s total.
- The Institution’s year-round grounds crew regular evaluates Institution buildings and takes appropriate action as required for snow removal.
- The Institution does not instruct property owners regarding snow removal from their own roofs, and is not aware of any private-property roof collapses on the grounds.
The amphitheater has been a controversial subject in recent months after Chautauqua Officials announced they were planning to construct a brand new amphitheater to accommodate modern needs and requirements. However, that idea was meant with a lot of criticism, and officials have opted to instead look into the idea of simply upgrading and persevering the current structure. A final decision is expected in August of this year.