San Bernardino looking for operator for 20 screen multiplex
SAN BERNARDINO, CA — When it opened in 1999, the tax-payer built CinemaStar 20 appeared to be a successful venture, especially in a town with relatively few screens. Located adjacent to the historic California Theater, which is now a performing arts center, it seemed ideally located. But by 2008, the city’s redevelopment agency had taken over the multiplex, CinemaStar was bankrupt, and the theater closed. A recent proposal to renovate and reopen the theater by Maya Cinemas now appears dead, though some other chains may be interested.
The $12 million, 20-screen movie theater — built with taxpayer dollars — today sits empty, surrounded by chain-link fence, its interior gutted on Maya’s promise to rebuild the stadium seating and install new carpeting and a 3-D IMAX screen.
The default is just the latest in a series of unfulfilled promises that began in 1996, when the city signed the original developer, Metropolitan Development, to build the multiplex and restaurants and shops near it.
The full story can be read here in thePress-Enterprise.