A shuttered prison in Philadelphia that opened nearly 200 years ago is in line for a $500,000 state grant to help with its preservation.

 

The state announced Friday an economic growth grant to fund structural improvements at Eastern State Penitentiary.

 The prison now ranks as Philadelphia's fifth-most-visited tourist attraction, drawing some 300,000 visitors a year.

The money will pay for work on the roof and skylights to keep water from getting inside the structure.
Eastern State, which opened in 1829, operated until 1971. It's been a cultural attraction since 1994, hosting events for Halloween and Bastille Day.