Preservation Project of the Year

The Coronado Theatre


This $18.5 million renovation and expansion project transformed a crumbling 1927 movie palace into a modern performing arts center. Designed by architect Frederic Klein, this “entertainment Baroque”-styled theater originally was built for $1.5 million. In additional to its high-quality restoration design, the awards jury cited the project’s broad-based community effort. More than 5,000 donors contributed, giving between a few dollars to $2 million. Furthermore, more than 500 volunteers donated their time in leading tours, stuffing envelopes and even fixing leaking pipes. Many of these volunteers also helped guide over 40,000 Rockfordians—nearly a third of the city’s population—through the Coronado during its grand reopening week.

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