STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) -- The Stevens Point city council will meet at 5:30 p.m. Monday night to approve a bid to demolish the fox theater in downtown Stevens point. But there is a slim chance the front facade could survive if the family that owns it signs it over.
Fox Theater in downtown Stevens Point on December 2, 2019. (WSAW-TV).
The city will approve two contractor bids. One to tear down the fox theater completely and another to save the front facade.
They need to tear down the structure by Christmas because the city says it is completely unsafe. "We had a contractor in there last week and the water was pouring through the roof and the contractor said I don't feel safe standing here I have to get out," explained Mayor Mike Wiza of the city of Stevens Point.
There is a hiccup, any plans to save the front of the theater relies on the original owners to sign off on selling the building to the city. "All the committees and city have approved it. Fox on Main has and Create Portage County has approved it. The only thing we are waiting on is the dissolution of the donation agreement that the Sanders family put on it," said Wiza.
That agreement restricts what the building could be used for and would not allow the city to redevelop it. So far the family has not signed it. "It's a shame that this legacy building in Stevens Point gets to come down. But the Sanders family gets to make that call I guess," said Wiza on Monday.
The Sanders family tells the city they have a bid that can fix it but their contractor has not seen the building since 2013.
If the Sanders family doesn't sign it the entire building could come down as soon as Friday and then it could sit as an empty lot for years until the city would be able to assume ownership.