WORTHINGTON — A full 15 months after the groundbreaking, Worthington's new movie theater has reached the final phase of construction.

Worthington Director of Public Works Todd Wietzema explained that the city's portion of the construction project — the 19,527-square-foot space built by Tri-State General Contracting of Jackson at a cost of $3,795,000 — is finished. Over the next couple of weeks, the movie operating company, The Movie Guy Inc., will lay down carpet, paint the walls, install furniture and set up projection equipment.

Wietzema took The Globe on a tour Friday and showed off the space.

The New Grand Theater boasts five screens, three small 50-seaters and two large that seat 100 people each. The seats inside the theater rooms will be the latest in movie theater comfort, with reclining capability and cozy cushioning.

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Progress on the much-anticipated theater has been slower than planned in part due to COVID-19, Wietzema said. Even after the building is completely ready, the coronavirus pandemic will likely delay the opening of the facility, because movies are not currently being filmed or produced.

"They (Todd Frager and The Movie Guy Inc.) don't want to open a new theater until there are new movies to show," Wietzema said.

The new target opening date is May 1, 2021.