Harper Theater awarded

Staff Writer

Harper Theater will receive an award from Landmarks Illinois next week for restoring the historic movie house.

The theater will receive the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Preservation Awards on Oct. 26, along with eight other award recipients.

Landmark Illinois presents the awards to “individuals, organization and projects throughout the state that represent the excellent in historic preservation.”

The theater reopened early this year after a decade-long vacancy and a $13.2 million rehab project. Landmarks Illinois put it on its 2008 watch list for most endangered buildings in the Chicagoland area.

The interior of the building was gutted to add four theaters, in what had previously been a three-theater movie house. When the building was originally constructed in 1914 it was a 1200 seat vaudeville theater.

The terra cotta and brick façade was restored and a replica of the marquee created.