The City Of St. Croix Falls Celebrates Completed Renovation Of Historic St. Croix Falls Auditorium By Developer, 210 Civic, LLC

The City Of St. Croix Falls Celebrates Completed Renovation Of Historic St. Croix Falls Auditorium By Developer, 210 Civic, LLC

ST. CROIX FALLS, WI — The City of St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin, in partnership with developer 210 Civic, LLC, is delighted to announce the successful completion of the renovation of the Historic St. Croix Falls Auditorium. This landmark venue, cherished for its deep cultural significance, has undergone a comprehensive restoration aimed at preserving its historic charm while enhancing its functionality for future generations.

Originally constructed in 1916, the then St. Croix Falls Civic Auditorium was a city-owned building built with the vision of community gathering and theater. The auditorium’s full potential, however, was barely realized when World War I and the Spanish Flu epidemic broke out. Since that time, the auditorium has had many interesting uses, including a sewing factory, city library, movie theater, and original home to the Festival Theatre company. The renovation project reflects the city's commitment to historic preservation and urban revitalization, marking a significant milestone in securing the auditorium's legacy as a cornerstone of community pride.

The renovation plans were meticulously crafted by the developers in collaboration with architects and national historic preservation experts. The project focused on restoring the auditorium's architectural integrity, upgrading infrastructure, enhancing accessibility features, and ensuring compliance with modern safety standards—all while preserving its unique character.

Mayor Kirk Anderson expressed his satisfaction with the project's outcome, stating, "The St. Croix Falls Auditorium holds a special place in our hearts, and its renovation ensures that it will continue to serve as a vibrant hub for cultural and community activities." The City of St. Croix Falls has made significant strides in revitalizing its downtown area through targeted efforts and strategic investments like the Historic Auditorium which also had financial assistance from the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation in addition to the City and private and corporate donors, all while maintaining its commitment to a unique and pristine river valley community.

Other key achievements in this initiative are the reconstruction of River Street and West Kentucky Street, a new path along River Street to the Overlook, the replacement of most of the curbs and gutters along Washington Street, and the repainting of the street light poles.

Additionally, after pursuing a four-year code enforcement legal battle with a former property owner downtown, the city purchased his four properties. One property was vacant and is available for development, a second 136 North Washington Street, had a dilapidated building that was demolished by the city and has been sold for the development of a restaurant, 107 North Washington Street was sold and is the home of the Unique Boutique, and 101 North Washington Street is in the possess of being sold and will become an Art Center, further enhancing the downtown landscape.

These efforts have not only preserved important historical structures but also revitalized the local economy and community spirit, transforming the downtown area into a vibrant and attractive destination, and has led to additional private investment.

210 Civic, LLC was created by local residents Jeff Virchow and Rick Vezina for the sole purpose of restoring the auditorium. Rick owns a commercial general contracting business (Lift Bridge Builders, Houlton WI) and Jeff has built and renovated several structures over many years. Both Jeff and Rick are passionate about saving this building as well as preserving its history. "We are honored to have been part of this transformative project," said Jeff Virchow, of 210 Civic, LLC. "Our goal was to breathe new life into this historic gem while respecting its rich history and ensuring its relevance for generations to come."

The renovation project began late summer of 2022 and was completed summer of 2024. Throughout the renovation process, the City of St. Croix Falls and 210 Civic, LLC provided regular updates to the community, fostering transparency and engagement.

The auditorium has been rebranded as “The Historic Auditorium” by the developers to begin its new journey in our historic downtown corridor. A formal Grand Opening and ribbon cutting will occur later this summer or early this fall.

For more information and updates on this renovation project, please visit their website, their Facebook page or contact Jeff Virchow via email at jeff@thehistoricauditorium.com.

About the City of St. Croix Falls: The City of St. Croix Falls is located in Polk County Wisconsin on the banks of the St. Croix River. Known as the City of Trails and for its dedication to the arts, visitors from around the country visit St. Croix Falls to experience the beauty of the river, the serenity of the parks, recreation, music, and entertainment.

Last Update: Jul 08, 2024 3:10 pm CDT

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