There were six. Now there are three. The Sarasota Performing Arts Foundation has selected the architecture firms Foster + Partners, Renzo Piano Building Workshop and Snøhetta as finalists to design the new performing arts center planned for The Bay. Examples of each firm's work can be seen above.

The selection process began with 43 firms expressing interest in designing the project. That list was narrowed to six earlier this year. The three firms named as finalists will each appear in Sarasota to offer presentations that are open to the public next Wednesday, May 31. Those presentations will take place from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the grand foyer of the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, 777 N. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota.

The day after the presentations, Thursday, June 1, a Performing Arts Foundation task force will hold a meeting to select one of the firms for the project. That meeting will be open to the public and will begin at 1 p.m. in the SRQ Media Studio in the City Hall Annex, 1565 First St., Sarasota. The task force is made up of three board members from the Performing Arts Foundation and a fourth member appointed by the City of Sarasota.

Registration to attend next week's presentations is encouraged but not required. Members of the public can register online here.

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