Town of Altavista takes possession of historical Vista Theatre

The town bought the landmark site in 2020, but didn’t take possession until this month
Published: Apr. 28, 2021 at 5:25 PM EDT
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ALTAVISTA, Va. (WDBJ) - The landmark Vista Theatre once attracted many people inside its doors.

In 1989, a fire scorched the inside of the building, rendering it quiet for decades.

Now, the town has officially taken possession of the site, kick-starting a new process.

“It’s so special because we actually got the deed, and when we have the deed, that allows us to move forward with engineering studies and see what actually needs to be structurally to make it a viable building,” said Mike Mattox, mayor.

Mattox remembers being in the theater’s seats years ago.

They might be stacked up and dusty now, but the town looks to restore things soon.

The question becomes - what should the place be?

“Do you want it to be a music venue? Do you want it just to be a movie theater? Do you want it to be a place where you can have a dining area and such?” asked Mattox.

Whatever the decision is, the old theater will be a large investment for the town.

Mattox says it’s an investment worth the money.

“We’re looking at somewhere over $1 million to actually get this to where we want it to be, which is truly a destination for the area,” said Mattox.

The next steps include doing feasibility studies on the site.

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