Historic Theater Lands Regional Cities Funding

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The main performance space will seat 2,200 patrons. (rendering courtesy IEDC) The main performance space will seat 2,200 patrons. (rendering courtesy IEDC)
FORT WAYNE -

The Indiana Economic Development Corp. has approved $1 million in Regional Cities Initiative funding for the renovation of the historic Clyde Theatre in northeast Indiana. The project, which will cost more than $5 million, is expected to begin next month and be complete by early 2018.

Renovations to the 21,000 square-foot theater in Fort Wayne includes transforming the facility into a multi-use entertainment and events venue, while "preserving its unique features," according to the IEDC. It will feature a performance hall with a 2,200-person capacity and 6,000 square-foot, two-story art gallery.

"The Indiana Regional Cities Initiative is transforming our approach to economic development by increasing our focus on talent attraction, quality of place and collaboration," said IEDC President Elaine Bedel. "The revitalization of the Clyde Theatre will enhance the region's arts, culture and recreation, supporting northeast Indiana's efforts to attract and retain talent."

The Clyde Theatre was built in 1951 and operated as a cinema seating up to 1,800 patrons for more than 40 years. It has been vacant since the early 1990s. The renovation is being funded in part by Fort Wayne-based Sweetwater Sound Founder Chuck Surack and his wife, Lisa.

"The IEDC's support of the Clyde Theatre project is one more example of their vision and commitment to economic growth in Fort Wayne and northeast Indiana," said Surack. "We look forward to the theater having a major impact, both economic and cultural, on the Quimby Village area and southwest Fort Wayne."

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