EIGHT YEARS after its ambitious building plans were sidelined by Congress’s refusal to provide funds, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts unveiled a scaled-back — but still exciting — vision for expansion. The project would provide needed rehearsal and classroom space and enhanced access and space for the public as well. The money will be privately raised — half being donated by the center’s chairman — setting an example of civic-mindness.
“I am very much interested in promoting the idea that the federal government can’t do all of the things it used to be able to do,” center chairman David M. Rubenstein, told the New York Times of his extraordinary gift of $50 million toward design and construction of the new building. Mr. Rubenstein said he felt an obligation as chairman “to be a leader” and he hopes that more Americans will, as the federal budget tightens, include nonprofit federal entities in their philanthropy.