The City of Houston has announced a $10 million gift from socialite and philanthropist Lynn Wyatt toward the renovation of Jones Plaza.
The lead gift in a $29 million capital campaign aimed at transforming an underused area of downtown, Wyatt's gift will support creation of a performance lawn with flexible infrastructure for concerts and other free programs. The renovated space also will include a cascading water feature, trees and gardens, a theater, and a restaurant. According to Houston First Corporation, a government entity that operates arts and convention facilities, an additional $15 million in public funds has been committed to the project.
In recognition of the gift, and with the agreement of the family of the late Jesse H. Jones, who served as secretary of commerce in the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt and later established the Houston Endowment with his wife, the plaza will be renamed Lynn Wyatt Square for the Performing Arts.
"I have long been devoted to the arts because I believe that the arts, particularly the performing arts, are the soul of any city," said Wyatt. "This is such a wonderful honor and I am delighted that this beautiful Square for the Performing Arts will be enjoyed by my fellow Houstonians and visitors long after I am gone."