Preservation Alert

  • January 13, 2006

    Brattle Needs Your Help!!

    CAMBRIDGE, MA — The Brattle Theater is in the middle of its largest and most serious fundraising campaign in its 53 year history. You can read about the campaign and the history of the theater here:

    In October 2005, the Brattle initiated the “Preserve the Legacy” campaign. The goals of the fundraising drive was to raise $400,000 by the end of 2005 and an additional $100,000 by the end of 2006. Due to strong community support for this non-profit theater, the response and media converage has been overwhelming. Although they did not meet this lofty goal by the end of the year, the good news is that the Brattle was given a 1 year lease extension and now has all of 2006 to raise the remaining money.

    As of January 1st 2006, the Brattle has raised $200,000, but they need to raise $300,000 more before February of 2007. If you love old theaters and preserving classic venues, please contribute whatever you can via the Brattle website. They could use all of the help they can.

    Thank you!

  • January 6, 2006

    Petition to halt demolition of the RKO Keith’s

    FLUSHING, NY — Our friend, Thomas Stathes (Tom S.), has organized a petition to save one of the historically & architecturally most important theaters; the RKO Keith’s Theatre in its entirety.

    The theater is located at 129-43 Northern Blvd, Flushing, N.Y. The current owner, Boymelgreen, plans to only save the landmarked lobby, & demolish at least 95% of the cherishable theater, for a glass curtain to view the lobby and a glass multi-use high-rise. I urge everyone “Nationwide” to sign the RKO Keith petition, & show your support, since time is of the essence! In addition, please forward the petition link to as many contacts as possible:

    We believe it is of utmost importance to: 1.Fully restore & rebuild ALL architectural features which make the RKO Keith a distinguishable famed theater (Facade, auditorium, lobby, etc); 2.Encourage developer Boymelgreen to compromise by building above the RKO Keith, which will leave the base as it was always meant to be. The Keith was already built once, & there is adequate funding, so there’s no reason why it can’t be preserved/restored in its entirety, to respect its significance & grandeur; 3.Let the public be heard, and factor in the concerns of the majority; 4.The Landmarks Preservation Commission should landmark the RKO Keith’s, & work with Boymelgreen closely.

  • December 2, 2005

    National Theater to be sold?

    RICHMOND, VA — The Historic Richmond Foundation is currently considering plans to sell the National Theater. Contracts are currently being considered with restrictions as to reuse of this historic structure. One potential reuse includes the addition of a 120 room hotel above the current structure.

    The National Theatre in downtown Richmond has several potential buyers, including a group looking to purchase it and hold it for the Virginia Performing Arts Foundation.

    The Historic Richmond Foundation, which owns the theater at 700 E. Broad St., has sent copies of a draft contract to several suitors and is looking for responses by Wednesday, said John Owen Gwathmey, the group’s president.

    The National is listed for sale at $1.55 million, but the contract has a space for a price to be added, Gwathmey said. It also includes significant restrictions on how the historic theater could be altered.

    Times Dispatch:
    Groups Step Up to Acquire The National

  • November 29, 2005

    Uptown Theatre, Chicago, IL – PETITION

    Dear Friends,

    I have just read and signed the online petition: “Save the Historic Uptown Theatre in Chicago,” which is hosted on the web by a free online petition service, at:

    I personally agree with what this petition says, and I think you might agree, too. If you can spare a moment, please take a look, and consider signing it yourself.

    The petition was started by Ted and Joanne, two Uptown residents who are among the best and most active Friends of the Uptown volunteers at this time.


    Jeff Greene
    EverGreene Painting Studios, Inc.

  • November 17, 2005

    Pasadena Star News: ‘Panel OKs Raymond Condos’

    PASADENA, CA — After a tireless effort to save the majestic Raymond Theatre by the Friends of the Raymond Theatre, the Pasadena Star News is reporting, “The city’s Design Commission has given Gene Buchanan the green light to convert the historic Raymond Theatre into condominiums and office space, dealing a heavy blow to those who want to see the 1921 theater restored.”

    Although the panel voted to approve Buchanan’s plan 5-3, an appeal can still be filed.

  • November 14, 2005

    Edinburgh Cameo Under Threat

    EDINBURGH, SCOTLAND — A planning application has been lodged with Edinburgh City Council to radically alter the Cameo Cinema in Edinburgh. Under the plans the current bar area would be converted to a small 31-seater screen, and the current 250-seat Screen 1 – the original, largely unaltered and never subdivided 1914 original auditorium – is to be converted to a large bar and restaurant.

    You can see a full history of the building – and lots of photos of the stunning interior here.

    Despite that this is quite clearly a change of use from a cinema with bar attached to primarily a bar with a cinema attached, the applicants appear to be hoping to get it through under their existing licenses. Unfortunately the cinema itself is not listed; however the surrounding buildings are C(s)-listed. We are writing to Historic Scotland to ask them to consider spot-listing the cinema itself.

  • September 26, 2005

    Save The Trylon Theater Petition

    QUEENS, NY — Please click on the following link to sign a petition to save the Trylon Theater:

    Save The 1939 Trylon Theater!!!

    The petition:

    To: Robert Tierney (Chair, NY Landmarks Preservation Commission) & Melinda Katz (Councilwoman, District 29)

    The signers of this petition agree that the 1939 Art Deco/Moderne Trylon Theater (98-81 Queens Blvd, Forest Hills, NY) is one of the last standing structures which has a strong cultural, historical, & architectural significance to the 1939 World’s Fair, with its “Trylon & Perisphere” monuments. On behalf of residents and historical societies, it is of utmost importance to halt further demolition, restore what was lost during the conversion, preserve this icon, and officially landmark this truly rare gem of a theater!!!

  • September 23, 2005

    Urgent Note from the Committee To Save The Trylon!

    FOREST HILLS, NY — URGENT note from the Committee To Save The Trylon Theater (98-81 Qns Blvd, Forest Hills, NY):

    To save Trylon from further demolition, please write letters/e-mails to Councilwoman Melinda Katz ASAP. In addition, please spread the word by informing as many people as you can to do so: (I think writing e-mails would be more spontaneous, but of course it’s your preference)

    Councilwoman Melinda Katz
    FOREST HILLS, N.Y. 11375-6735
    (718) 544-8800

  • September 22, 2005

    Hunterdon Theater To Be Razed?

    FLEMINTON, NJ — The former Hunterdon Theater building in Flemington might be razed according to a Hunterdon County Democrat article. On October 5, Walgreen’s will propose a new building on the site before the town’s planning commission. The Hunterdon closed September 16, 1993 and was renovated into Coat World. The building has been vacant for several years. Potentially, the Church Street landmark could be restored to its former use.

  • August 23, 2005

    Beverly Theater Demolition Begins Today

    BEVERLY HILLS, CA — According to the Friends of the Boyd Weekly Update: “Demolition is starting today on the famed Beverly Theater in Beverly Hills. Opened in 1925 with Indo-Chinese design, the movie palace’s conversion to a retail store in the 1970’s retained its ornate landmark exterior & ornate interior. Preservationists objected unsuccessfully to the loss of this Los Angeles landmark.”

    Cinema Treasures users weigh in as well on the theater’s page on this site.