CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Two options are currently on the table on what to do with the Municipal Auditorium in Charleston.

In a special committee meeting Thursday, city council members and members of the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center Board heard from ZMM Architects and Engineers who conducted the assessment for the auditorium. ZMM detailed their engineering report to the committee and then provided two options with estimated costs.

The options are close in estimated costs. The city can either decide to have the auditorium be fully renovated for $25.4 million, or tear it down and build a new one for $25.2 million. A new auditorium would be around 50,000 square feet in size.

Adam Krason, architect and principal at ZMM Architects & Engineers, said following their assessment of the auditorium, they determined that the facility in its current condition is not safe and is in need of major improvements before it can be used again.

“It’s in poor condition and is not designed in a manner that supports a positive visitor experience or revenue generation,” Krason told the committee Thursday.

The City of Charleston announced in February that the Municipal Auditorium would be temporarily closed and all scheduled events there would be put on pause. The city noted the auditorium’s “critical electrical and structural issues” and “life safety concerns.” The venue also recently made the 2024 Endangered Properties List.

Krason said the issues are vast and basically cover the entire building. There are problems mechanically, electrically and with plumbing and accessibility.

“There’s no part of this building that is in good condition,” he said. “Every portion of this building is going to require work if it is going to be salvaged.”

Engineers also noted the damaged plaster and ceiling tiles in the venue. The auditorium’s fire alarm system is also in need of an immediate fix, according to Krason. Outside the facility, engineers also mentioned in their report the poor condition of paving and sidewalks.

Charleston mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin believes the Municipal is a facility that can consistently be filled and there is a need for a venue of it’s size for performances and events.

“No mayor wants to shut down a revenue-generating facility, but we’ll do it when it comes to health and safety issues” she said.

The city is waiting on a final assessment made by a contracting company before they make their decision on what to do with the auditorium. It’s expected the committee will meet again sometime this month.

The Municipal Auditorium has been a staple in the Charleston community since 1939. The venue is 85 years old.