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Cabarrus Magazine

GEM Theater Closing for Repairs; Renovations

Feb 09, 2021 04:28PM ● By Jason Huddle

The Gem Theater

The Gem Theatre will be closing for repairs and renovations following the 7:00 show on Thursday, February 11. According to an email sent out by the theater, the heating and air conditioning system is being replaced. The current system located on the roof of the mechanical room will have to be removed by crane. Next, repairs and reinforcement to the existing structure will need to be made to accommodate the new HVAC system. “During this construction time we will be without heat,” the email went on to explain.


The City of Kannapolis is also funding the restoration of the GEM’s iconic marquee. This work will begin at the same time as the HVAC work. According to theater officials, The Gem Theatre marquee is the most photographed location in Kannapolis and pictures have been featured multiple times in publications such as Southern Living, Our State Magazine and, of course, Cabarrus Magazine. The email also said, “Great care has been taken to preserve the authentic look and feel of this community treasure. For that reason, the neon lighting will be retained, colors will be restored, and, upon completion, the marquee will appear just as it did when it was originally constructed in 1936.”

 A third project that is currently underway at the Gem Theatre is the addition of accessible restrooms on the first floor of the theatre. Adjacent space, which has formerly been occupied by Keever’s Photography Studio and Coulter’s Shoe Store, is being converted to expanded modern restrooms and additional event space. Also included will be an exit corridor to relieve congestion in the lobby area of the theatre following a feature.

 According to the theater, work will most likely not be completed until after May 1. As they do not have a completion date as of yet, no reopening date has been set as a result.

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