Source: Kitsap Sun
By: Rachel Seymour
Posted: Dec 18, 2015

SILVERDALE — A local theater group plans to partner with and build next to the new Silverdale library branch on Bucklin Hill Road.

“I totally believe that sometimes the stars do align,” said Jill Jean, executive director of the Kitsap Regional Library. “Partnerships are also plain good governance.”

CSTOCK, a not-for-profit community theater organization that had its first production nearly 30 years ago, announced it plans to make a $100,000 down payment on 1.3 acres on Blaine Avenue near the Clear Creek Trail. The total cost of the property is $800,000.

It would be the first theater CSTOCK has owned.

The theater group rented space in the county-owned Silverdale Community Center for more than 20 years. Kitsap County determined that building is no longer safe, and CSTOCK has been operating in the Central Kitsap Middle School theater since last summer.

“It was a blessing in disguise,” said Brandon Myers, CSTOCK board president. “We’ve been trapped so long with what we have, we’ve forgot what we could do.”

The theater group has raised about $283,000 so far, mostly through a $250,000 grant from the C. Keith Birkenfeld Memorial Trust. An estimated $4.5 million will be necessary to complete the project.

CSTOCK announced its plans during a Central Kitsap Community Council meeting Thursday night.

Once it makes the down payment, CSTOCK will have six months to decide whether to move forward with the purchase, Myers said.

Myers laid out a few requirements CSTOCK has for the building: a 200-seat theater with classroom, studio and retail space, along with a commercial kitchen and room to partner with other organizations — like the library — for a community center model. The theater group also wants to include more cultural aspects and the Clear Creek Trail into its new facility.

If all goes according to plan, CSTOCK could begin construction in 2017 and finish in 2018.

The Kitsap Regional Library had a similar deposit and agreement with Sound West Group, a commercial real estate development company, to buy 1.4 acres on Bucklin Hill Road for $850,000. The purchase was finalized just before Thanksgiving.

CSTOCK and the library are hoping they can develop a stronger sense of community identity within the retail center of the county.

“Silverdale has an identity crisis,” said Myers, who grew up there. “I always thought the heart of Silverdale was the mall, but what we really want to do is bring in culture and arts.”

The Kitsap Regional Library and CSTOCK partnership could lead to an extra bonus for the groups: An additional 0.42 acres north of the properties. Sound West Group has offered the parcel to the two groups if CSTOCK decide to buy 1.3 acres.

The two organizations haven’t discussed what they would do with the extra land, but it could simply allow each facility more space, said Jaime Forsyth, Kitsap Regional Library Foundation director.

CSTOCK and the Kitsap Regional Library first started talking about partnering two years ago, as the library considered where to build its new Silverdale branch. The current 4,905-square-foot site is in Old Town Silverdale, and can’t be expanded, according to KRL officials.