Throughout most of twentieth century this block was part of a theater district that included both playhouses and cinemas. Richmond has an abundance of elaborate old movie palaces, and apparently (and unfortunately) civic leaders thought that the auditorium of the Colonial, the oldest standing movie theater in Richmond, could be sacrificed for an office building. The resulting “facade-ectomy” retains the Renaissance Revival facade with its lavish ornaments by Richmond sculptor Ferruccio Legnaioli. While the boxy office tower that rises behind the facade makes an attempt at context, it is overly fussy and looks like a giant 1920s floor-model radio.
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