Crews begin tearing down Stetson University's Stover Theatre

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DELAND, Fla. —

Crews began tearing down the historic Stover Theatre at Stetson University in DeLand on Monday, despite the fight from the historical society.

School officials said the building, which was built in 1930, doesn't have everything they need for a modern-day performing arts class and they need to make room for future students.

The university's decision has been a source of some controversy.

Recently the DeLand Historic Preservation board voted to preserve the theater. But city commissioners approved Stetson's request to tear it down. That decision angered some preservation board members.

The building's red brick and classic design is a treasure, but Stetson officials said renovating the building would have cost $3.7 million.

Hundreds of pieces of the theater will be reused. Even some of the red brick will be used for sidewalks.

The space where the building stands will likely be used for parking.

The building is currently being stripped of metal and other valuable items. On Wednesday crews will start taking the walls down.