Historic Hill Theater Receives $100,000 Restoration Grant
Grants awarded for main streets throughout the state
Oregon Heritage, a division of Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, awarded 27 matching grants worth $2,355,700 to Oregon Main Street Network organizations across the state for building projects that encourage economic revitalization. Projects range from façade improvement to elevator access and seismic upgrades and awards range from $17,500-$100,000.
The department funded projects that best conveyed the ability to stimulate private investment and local economic development, and best fit within the community’s long range plan for downtown vitality.
Funded projects include:
- Klamath Falls Downtown Association will receive $100,000 to install elevators in two downtown buildings. The project will address the goal of downtown housing and make available 20 units.
- Astoria Downtown Historic District Association will receive $100,000 for a downtown housing project that comprises 40 units and retail space. Housing is a proven need in this community and people living in downtowns support other downtown businesses.
- A $100,000 project in Burns will restore a historic hotel left vacant for decades.
- A $100,000 project in Independence will rehabilitate an underused building to be a local brewery.
- Several communities were selected for work to repair or restore their historic theaters: The OK Theatre in Enterprise $100,000, the Rivoli Theater in Pendleton $100,000, the Bungalow Theater in Woodburn $100,000, and the Hill Theatre, now a retail store, in Hillsboro $100,000.
Other communities awarded grants include Baker City, Bandon, Beaverton, Carlton, Corvallis, Florence, John Day, La Grande, McMinnville, Newberg, Oregon City, Port Orford, Portland, Reedsport, St. Helens, Stayton, The Dalles, and Weston.
The Hill Theater project in Hillsboro is a collaborative effort between the Hillsboro Downtown Partnership (grantee), property owner of the Hill Theater Antique Mall, and the City of Hillsboro. The project scope includes removing and replacing the leaky roof, restoring the historic marquee, and finally, touching up the paint, restoring the windows, and restoring the antique lights on the building. The Hill Theater is the only remaining Art Deco building in the City of Hillsboro; thus, restoring this building saves this piece of Hillsboro history.
The grant program was created during the 2015 legislative session, and placed with the Oregon State Historic Preservation Office. The legislation established a permanent fund for the Oregon Main Street Revitalization Grant, and provided an initial infusion of funds from the sale of lottery bonds. The funds must be used to award grants to participating Oregon Main Street Network organizations to acquire, rehabilitate or construct buildings to facilitate community revitalization. The program also requires that at least 50 percent of the funds go to rural communities as defined in the bill.