HOGANSVILLE, Ga. (WRBL) – The Historic Royal Theater in Hogansville that was built nearly 85 years ago will be breaking ground on some long- awaited renovations this upcoming fall. 

Lynne Miller is the Planning and Development Director for the City of Hogansville and she said the city has been trying to restore the theater for several years. 

“The theater is key to downtown redevelopment. We have a lot of vacant buildings and underutilized buildings and just knowing that the theater is going to be renovated is already starting to fill those buildings. The idea is jobs; jobs downtown but also jobs out by the interstate,” said Miller. 

According to Miller, the historic theater was built and opened in 1937 and was used until the late 1960’s before closing its doors for years. Eventually it was given to the City of Hogansville and was repurposed as City Hall in 1984 and was used as such until 2021 before shutting its doors again.

The project currently has an estimated cost of $2 million and according to Miller, the city has met its goal. However, they are continuing to search for grants due to the increasing costs of construction materials. 

Miller said the project is being funded by several grants and the special local option sales tax in Troup County. Some of the grants include $750,000 from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development and Administration, $700,000 from SPLOST and $250,000 from the Callaway Foundation. There have been several other grants given to the city allowing them to meet their goal of $2 million. 

“It’s very important that we preserve the historic character of the theater and all of these parties that have contributed these grants and so forth, which we are very grateful. They all recognize that, they recognize that we want to keep the historic character of the building and it’s great that we can put it back into its original use,” said Miller.

The construction will commence this fall and is anticipated to be completed in two years. Miller said Hogansville hopes to have the theater restored by 2024. It will be repurposed in its original state as a live-action theatre, film theater and a space for community events. 

Miller said once the renovations are completed, the theater will be managed by a professional theater management company and there will be 30-70 vacant jobs. 

“It’s very important that we preserve the historic character of the theater and all of these parties that have contributed these grants and so forth, which we are very grateful. They all recognize that, they recognize that we want to keep the historic character of the building and it’s great that we can put it back into its original use,” said Miller.