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Restoration of Ramova Theater in Chicago’s Bridgeport Neighborhood begins

Reconstruction & Renovation

Restoration of Ramova Theater in Chicago’s Bridgeport Neighborhood begins

The building was originally built in 1929.

By David Malone, Managing Editor | October 13, 2021
Ramova Theater restoration
Courtesy O'Riley Office

The renovation of Chicago’s Ramova Theater, a 36,000-sf building in the Bridgeport Neighborhood, has begun. The project includes restoring the theater and building out adjacent space for a new brewery and restaurant at 3510-3520 S. Halsted. The building was originally built in 1929 and has been vacant since 1985.

Upon completion, the renovated Ramova Theater will include a 1,600-seat auditorium at ground level and a separate balcony-level theater that can accommodate 200 people. The venue will be able to host concerts and events for local schools and community groups.

Adjacent to the theater, a separate entrance will lead patrons to a new 4,000-sf brewery and tap room fronting Halsted Street. Brewery operations will extend into the basement that will be within view of the dining and bar area. A 200-person space on the second floor above the brewery and taproom will be able to host private events and intimate musical performances. Additionally, the project will feature the revived 800-sf, 30-seat Ramova Grill restaurant.

The project will also return the lobby and auditorium to its original Spanish courtyard style and restore the existing marquis, the theater’s plaster ceiling and other decorative plaster elements, the ticket booth, and the interior’s faux-marble and gilded plasterwork. The historic brick and terracotta facade along the east face of the building that houses the brewery and restaurant will also be restored.

“We will be restoring numerous architectural details in adherence to National Landmark restoration guidelines,” Andy Totten, McHugh Construction Vice President and Project Executive said, in a release. “Working closely with Baum Revision and the design team’s historic preservation specialists, we will revive the historic features of the building while reinforcing the structure’s infrastructure and bringing the building up to code.”

O’Riley Office is designing the project with McHugh Construction as the general contractor. The restoration project is slated for completion in late 2022.

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