Plans to restore, renovate historic Southern Kentucky theater moving forward

This high-resolution rendering from DECO Architects shows what the outside of the Virginia...
This high-resolution rendering from DECO Architects shows what the outside of the Virginia Theatre in Somerset will look like once a renovation and restoration project is complete.(Deco Architects/City of Somerset)
Published: Apr. 27, 2021 at 8:16 AM EDT
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SOMERSET, Ky. (WYMT) - Officials in one Southern Kentucky city are moving forward with plans to renovate and restore a piece of their history.

The Somerset City Council approved a multi-million dollar municipal bond project on Monday, agreeing to spend $2 million to restore the nearly 100 year old Virginia Theatre.

Leaders say they plan to convert the facility into a live performance venue and the project will begin immediately.

The City of Somerset will own and maintain the facility, which Mayor Alan Keck anticipates will open next year, just in time for the 100th anniversary of the building.

“For all of my adult life, I’ve listened to Somerset residents discuss revitalizing downtown and specifically restoring and reopening the Virginia Theatre,” Keck said in a news release from the city. “I’m grateful to everyone who has kept this dream alive by fundraising, volunteering or simply promoting the idea that someday this could be accomplished. With tonight’s announcement, history is not only being honored, it’s being made. I’m excited to join residents and visitors at an event in the fully renovated Virginia next year.”

Built in 1922, the building once served as a performance theater and later as a place to watch movies. The property has been vacant for more than 25 years.

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