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  • 10 East Art District


“Why don’t you just tear it down?”

It’s an oft-asked question that breaks our hearts. That said, we understand. The Rivoli has been empty for decades and, in its current state, it is an eyesore. But tearing down the Rivoli has never been an option for us.

It’s not part of the plan. Restoration has been the plan and that included finishing the roof. The auditorium roof was replaced in 2014 and that section is dry and protected. The remaining roof section covers the front portion of the Rivoli facing 10th Street. That roof , upon finishing, will secure the building. The new roof will eventually feature terra cotta barrel tiles, just like the original roof.

It’s a heck of a project.

But funding was secured in 2017, the project was reviewed and approved by the city, then the meticulous bidding process began to find a firm capable of this historic renovation procedure. We received a substantial grant ($300,000) through the Community Development Block program. We also received funds from the Efroymson Family Fund, a personal foundation of the Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF). and Local Initiative Support Corporation (LISC)—which is dedicated to improving the quality of neighborhoods—is providing support as well.

In short, we were thrilled...and thrilled again

Knowing that we finally had plans for a new roof was exciting! Knowing that we have support from some of Indy’s most respected organizations meant even more. It’s humbling, really. Because, without them, we could not have moved forward with the roof project.

More help came early in 2018 as a new community organization agreed to buy the Rivoli property. Inspire East 10th Street LLC, is a company formed for the purpose of promoting the revitalization of the East 10th Street corridor, including the area surrounding the Rivoli Theatre. John Boner Neighborhood Center is the managing partner of the LLC. Englewood Community Development Corp. and Near East Area Renewal are the other two members of the LLC.

However, since the funds from the Community Development Block program, the Efroymson Family Fund, and LISC are allocated for the roof project, we still need your help!

Your continued financial support of the Rivoli's basic needs is essential!

The day-to-day operating expenses, building security, insurance, property tax... They even cover the cost of the streetlight out back.

Your donations have been, and continue to be, crucial to the Rivoli's survival. Without you, there would not be a building on which to put a roof!

Speaking of, the roof project is set to be complete in 2019. After that, we can start on the fun stuff—redoing the marquee, for instance. Working on the electrical. The plumbing. Removing plaster from the inside and making the Rivoli grand once again.

Sure, it’s going to be a lot of work.

But know this: when we acquired the theater, the roof was already punctured with holes. Tarps, five-gallon buckets, and plastic swimming pools were spaced about the property, catching some, but not all, of the water. There was no heat or electricity. Mushrooms grew inside.

It wasn’t pretty.

All the same, we didn’t tear it down. We believe the Rivoli is an Eastside anchor, and a place for opportunity, community, and culture. The Efroymson Family Fund, LISC, and the City of Indianapolis agree.

What about you?

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