PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — The project to rebuild the Martin Theatre is not moving as quickly.

It first opened in 1936 as the Ritz Theater. It wasn’t until the early 1950s that the theater was named after owner Roy Martin Sr. 

Ted Williams and Clark Gable both attended shows there.

The city spent about $400,000 to restore the marquee out front in December 2020.

However, there hasn’t been anything else done about the restoration.

Commissioner Jenna Haligas said the theater will be one of her top priorities in the coming months. 

She said they’re waiting on Environmental and Historic Preservation(EHP) funding from FEMA.  

“That is the only hold up on the Martin Theatre,” Haligas said. “So we are construction document ready, ready to bid as soon as we found out about EHP. And we were surprised to hear last month. So fingers crossed we’re going to get that pretty soon.”

Commissioners awarded the architectural and engineering services contract to the Panama City-based DAG Architects back in July 2021.