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Historic yet abandoned Peoria theater damaged by fire

Cass Herrington
Peoria Public Radio

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - An abandoned yet historic Peoria theater has been damaged after a fire broke out inside.

The fire ignited late Saturday inside the Madison Theater in downtown Peoria.
Officials say the fire was sparked in the backstage area of the theater before spreading. Streets and a nearby bar were closed as firefighters worked to put out flames. 

Investigators are now looking for a cause. They have not said how much damage was caused. 

The 96-year-old building was closed to the public in 2003 after city inspectors deemed it unsafe. Several redevelopment proposals have been discussed since then, though no action has been taken.