Preservation Alert

  • August 15, 2008

    Kenosha closes the curtain on historic theater

    KENOSHA, WI — More news on the sad future of the Roosevelt Theatre.

    Kenosha is tearing down one of its historic movie houses over the objections of the building’s owners.

    Kathryn Hanneman and John Gee, owners of the Roosevelt Theatre since 2000, pleaded with city officials to spare the building. They want to turn the movie house into a studio for shooting commercials and television pilots. But after eight years, they’ve made no progress.

    Worse, say city officials, the owners let the building deteriorate to a condition beyond repair.

    Read the full story at the Daily Reporter(reg. reqr’d)

  • Ventnor and Beach theatres both threatened with demolition

    VENTNOR CITY, NJ — The Ventnor Twin Theatre has a champion in local resident Marsha Galespie who, along with a group of local residents, doesn’t want to see the last remaining theatre on Absecon Island replaced with 24 condos. Challenges to The Ventnor have included a city that would like to redevelop the area, an economy that still relies in part on a summer influx of vacationers and a $1.75 million dollar asking price by the current owners. These aren’t the best of circumstances to launch a rescue.

    The Ventnor Twin Theatre was opened in 1938 as The Ventnor Theatre after a fire destroyed the original 1921 structure. The art deco theatre was twinned in the 1960s or 1970s with a remodel that included a drop ceiling masking the original and blue and silver draping of the walls. The theatre was closed after a 1998 city inspection declared the structure on the verge of collapse. Then owners brought the theatre to code and it re-opened in 2000 but survived only until 2004 when it was shuttered.

  • August 12, 2008

    Poll: Save/demolish the Roosevelt Theatre?

    KENOSHA, WI — Vote once at WLIP to save the Roosevelt Theatre. You don’t need to register or sign in.

  • August 8, 2008

    Roosevelt Theatre owners vow to fight demolition.

    KENOSHA, WI — With the city voting the other day to remove asbestos and demolish the Roosevelt Theatre, a legal tug of war is ensuing with the owners as they fight over the future of the building.

    The City Council voted 14-1 Monday to approve contracts for removing asbestos and demolishing the theater, 2908 Roosevelt Road. Those actions could start in two weeks, and demolition could begin in about six weeks.

    Jon Gee, a co-owner of the theater, said he expected to bring some legal action against the city regarding the decision.

    “They’re going to hear from me; they’re going to hear from me for a long time,” Gee said on Tuesday. “It ain’t over ‘til it’s over.”

    Read the full story in the Kenosha News Online.

  • August 1, 2008

    Petition to save the historic Ridgewood Theatre

    QUEENS, NY — Friends of The Ridgewood Theatre, established by Michael Perlman of the Queens Preservation Council board of directors, is spearheading a campaign to preserve and reopen the 1916 Ridgewood Theater (55-27 Myrtle Ave, Ridgewood, Queens, NY), designed by America’s foremost theater architect Thomas Lamb. We are seeking a historically-sensitive tenant/buyer who sees the potential for creative adaptive reuse. In addition, we are hoping to encourage the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to designate the highly intact terra cotta & Indiana limestone facade, and theater lobby, as a NYC Individual Landmark & Interior Landmark, respectively. Please take a few moments to sign an online petition, urging the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission to act swiftly. Posting a comment would be extremely helpful. The link is as follows:

    Also, please join Friends of The Ridgewood Theatre at for history, photos, & status updates. Please forward this appeal to as many contacts as possible. Cinema Treasures fans worldwide, unite for a worthy cause! Thank you for your time!

  • June 23, 2008

    Roosevelt in need of buyer

    KENOSHA, WI — The Roosevelt Theatre could go dark for good if no legitimate sale offers come forward very soon.

    Mitch Engen, the city’s property division maintenance supervisor, said the city could finalize contracts for asbestos abatement and demolition for the Roosevelt Theatre, 2908 Roosevelt Road, within the next week.

    “We’re working on the contracts right now,” Engen said. “We sent it out for bid and we’ve had proposals for abatement and, separately, to take the building down. Nothing has been approved but they’re out there and we’re dotting the ‘i’s and crossing the ’t’s.”

  • May 30, 2008

    Ridgewood Theatre in danger

    RIDGEWOOD, QUEENS, NY — Michael Perlman, Dir. of Queens Preservation Council is seeking a historically-sensitive (arts-related) tenant for the endangered historic Ridgewood Theatre (55-27 Myrtle Ave, Queens, NY). It closed in March 2008 after nearly 92 years, and was the longest continuously operating theater citywide & potentially throughout the US. It was modeled after Times Square’s long-demolished Mark Strand Theatre, the 1st movie palace in the world.

    It is of the utmost importance to reopen, lease, adaptively & creatively reuse, and preserve a gem by the foremost Thomas Lamb, so it can contribute to the appeal of an up & coming neighborhood. Please become a Friend of the Ridgewood Theatre, and help spread the word to as many contacts as possible by forwarding our new website:

  • May 28, 2008

    Take A Minute To Help Save The Boyd Theatre

    PHILADELPHIA, PA — The following was sent in by Friends of the Boyd:

    Bids to buy Philadelphia’s historic Boyd Theatre are due Wednesday May 28, 2008. Some bids will be to preserve the theater, but some bids will be for the purpose of destroying downtown Philadelphia’s last movie palace! Once bids are in, Live Nation could quickly choose a new owner so we need YOUR HELP.

    In listing the Boyd Theatre on its national endangered list, the National Trust for Historic Preservation has provided easy steps for the public to advocate the survival of the Art Deco movie palace. Friends of the Boyd are asking every one of your members and supporters to please immediately visit “What you can do” and SEND THE EMAILS encouraging Live Nation to select an offer that will preserve the Boyd and reopen it as a public venue, and also write Mayor Nutter and Governor Rendell.

    And, please circulate this request to your own email lists!

  • May 27, 2008

    Fight for Grand Ecran Place d'Italie



    I enjoy Cinema Treasures enormously. I am glad I am not the only one obsessed with huge movie theaters. I will be going back to Paris this summer.

    I lived in Paris for seven years and one of my favorite movie theatres was the Grand Ecran Place d'Italie, not a classic palace but a modern marvel. Great cinema. Imagine my surprise when I discover that they want to close it down. Lucky for us, there is a big move to stop the raze. They have a website that contains many pics. You might be interested.



  • May 22, 2008

    Reminder: Rally In Support of Boyd Theatre Today!

    PHILADELPHIA, PA — A rally is scheduled for today at 11:30 AM in front of the Boyd Theatre, located at 1908 Chestnut. Everyone is urged to attend and show their support. According to Friends of the Boyd:

    • Adrian Fine of the National Trust for Historic Preservation will speak on why the National Trust included the Boyd Theatre on this important list.
    • John Gallery of the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia will speak on why the Alliance included the Boyd Theatre in their 2008 Endangered Property List.
    • State Representative Babette Josephs, will speak on why the community deserves a reopened Boyd Theatre.
    • Howard B. Haas, President of the Friends of the Boyd will speak, summarizing what needs to be done to ensure that the Boyd Theatre is restored and reopened instead of being demolished or altered.

    Most important will be your joining our rally!

    Thanks to Howard Haas for the information.[pre][/pre]