Johnson City Press: Jackson Theatre $500,000 closer to completion through state funding

Jackson Theatre $500,000 closer to completion through state funding

Jessica Fuller • Updated Mar 20, 2018 at 10:49 PM

Less than two years out from the Jackson Theatre’s proposed re-opening, $500,000 was placed in the state budget to further help the project along to get the doors open by the end of 2019.

The monies are part of Gov. Bill Haslam’s 2018-19 budget and are slotted to help with the renovation and restoration of the theater. The town bought the 100-year-old building in 2014 for $550,000 with the intention of renovating and restoring it to host plays for the Jonesborough Repertory Theatre, music performances and to screen movies.

At the time, the project was estimated to cost about $1.6 million.

“I have fought to ensure that the Jackson Theatre receives the support it needs, and I am satisfied that this project has been included as part of the governor’s budget,” said Rep. Matthew Hill. “The Jackson Theatre is an integral part of downtown, and this money will go a long way towards renovating and preserving a fixture of our local history. I am grateful to Gov. Haslam for supporting this project.”

“This is a tribute to the effort that (former) Mayor (Kelly) Wolfe put in,” Jonesborough Mayor Chuck Vest said. “This grant really helps us achieve that goal (the opening) quicker.”

This funding follows several grants the project has received over the past few years. Contributions from Wolfe and Sonia King made it possible for the town to begin work on the building’s next-door neighbor, The Stage Door, which will transform into a concession stand and box office by the time the project is completed.

Town administrator Bob Browning said that work on the main building is currently halted as work crews are waiting on the necessary equipment needed to reenforce the structure, but assured that the project is still on-track for late 2019 completion.

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