North Carolina budget to reinforce the city of Winston-Salem as a hub for tourism

Changes are coming to Winston-Salem after the state budget was released— from school funding renovations to a museum name change, here’s what you need to know.

WStoday: Downtown Winston-Salem

Downtown Winston-Salem skyline.

Did you miss World Tourism Day last week? Don’t worry, we did too, but we can still brag about our city.

City officials plan to set aside $35 million to support economic development activities and infrastructure improvements that will reinforce Winston-Salem’s position as a tourism, sports, and entertainment hub in the Piedmont Triad and the Northwest NC region. These improvements will enhance the community’s appearance with hopes of attracting visitors to the city.

The money comes from the approval of House Bill 259 — otherwise known as the state budget. Let’s talk numbers:

  • $37 million will go toward the second phase of work at the Kenneth R. Williams Auditorium on the Winston-Salem State University campus.
  • $11 million will go toward a new dorm for up to 200 University of North Carolina School of Arts high school students.
  • $51 million will go toward the second phase of work at the Roger L. Stevens Center for the Performing Arts on 4th Street. The funding will be provided over four fiscal years.
  • $35 million will go toward enhancing the area surrounding Baity Street, located north of Coliseum Drive and south of Reynolds Boulevard. The area attracts more than 750,000 patrons and visitors annually at events that occur on more than 260 days each year.

North Ward Council Member and Mayor Pro Tempore Denise D. Adams said the funding will enhance the city’s profile as a great place to live, work, play, and stay.
“We will use these funds to address parking, traffic, and pedestrian issues for the coliseum and fairgrounds area,” Adams said.

In addition, SECCA will undergo a name change from Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art to the NC Museum of Art-Winston-Salem. Its $15 million budget remains the same.