Puerto Rico-ARP-Culture Fort San Jerónimo del Boquerón is one of the historic buildings that will receive funding for improvements.
Image via Shutterstock

Gov. Pedro Pierluisi announced the allocation of $33.7 million to restore and modernize historic buildings, digitize documents, and support arts programs.

Puerto Rico’s cultural heritage will continue to benefit from the Biden administration’s American Rescue Plan (ARP).

This second allocation of funds comes after an initial $50 million that Gov. Pedro Pierluisi allocated to cultural institutions back in August.

“Our history and our heritage are an integral part of tourism on the island. Likewise, all the components of the cultural sector have great potential to impact our economic development, for which it is essential to preserve, protect, and promote it,” Pierluisi said on Monday, during a news conference.

The governor allocated $3.5 million for maintenance, improvements, and the restoration of 39 Institute of Puerto Rican Culture properties.

The emblematic Francisco Arriví and Victoria Espinosa theaters will receive $1.1 million for improvements. This work will include high-speed Internet connection, new energy-efficient equipment, lighting, infrastructure modernization, and electric generators.

In addition, $6 million will be used to make improvements to historic government properties such as Los Dominicos Convent, known as the National Gallery, Casa Opis, the Old Chamber of Commerce Building in the Bayamón Cultural District, Casilla del Caminero, and Fort San Jerónimo del Boquerón.

The Escuela de Artes Plásticas y Diseño will receive $2 million for maintenance, painting, and improvements to its historic building in Viejo San Juan.

The Conservatory of Music will receive the same amount for restoration, maintenance, instruments, new equipment, and security systems.

The State Historic Preservation Office will also receive $2.3 million for the renovation and construction of its facilities, a 3D projection show, and the digitization of archaeological archives.

Another $2 million was allocated for the restoration and digitization of over 100,000 historical documents, archaeological artifacts, museums, parks, and publications, among others. About $3 million will go to 60-80 grants and operating expense reimbursements to nonprofit arts and cultural organizations that promote excellence in the arts.