Officials are looking into turning the old Pineville City Hall into a museum. ABC 31 News’ Joel Massey has more.
There are plans to reopen the old Pineville City Hall building and turn it into a museum. Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser toured building and has high hopes of securing state funding to help restore the building.
“We’re not making any more old buildings. So, to see this building and the good shape it’s in, we’re just lucky that the city and these individuals have realized the importance of saving this building and turning it into a museum that can be a real tourist attraction. People travel all over the world to go back in time, and to see the jail cells and all the records from the early days here. They’ve got what many cities and parishes would love to have.”
Nungesser talks about the way that the department of culture and tourism is promoting museums in the state.
“We’ve recently purchases LouisianaMuseums.com. We are filming every museum in the state, over 211 of them, and then we will push out through social media, if you’ve got interest in history you’ll know about this place.”
Nungesser says there’s a good chance of getting grant money for the project.
“We’re going to look at some historical preservation money. We’ve given out main street grants. So, we’re going to see if any of those grants can be used for this facility, and we’re absolutely going to make a push to make that happen.”
Historian Michael Wynne imagines what the museum can be.
“The lieutenant governor was very impressed with this structure. He feels that it, as with the city of Pineville feels, this can be the center of Pineville history and Pineville culture in central Louisiana. It will need some restoration. It will need some recreation of some exhibits, but this can be a great place for all the city of Pineville people to be proud of.”
Wynne says the building itself is a work of art.
“The brickwork, although a little dirty right now, the brickwork is absolutely amazing. It is truly representative of the art deco movement, and quite frankly I know of no building in Central Louisiana that is so representative of the art deco movement than this wonderful old building. Second of all, this building can be used by the citizens of Pineville in many different ways, not just as a museum of its history and culture, but also as a center where the community can hold its activities from markets to gatherings, meetings, all sorts of activities.”