Preservation Alert

  • January 5, 2004

    Laurel Theatre Faces Demolition

    BRIDGETON, NJ — The Laurel Theatre, which has been closed for over 25 years, will most likely be demolished sometime in May, according to a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

    “It’s not in danger of falling down. It’s just a wreck,” said Ewing, who said he had been pushing the building’s demolition for years. “It’s an eyesore in the middle of town.”

  • December 17, 2003

    Ambassador Gets New Owner, Fate Remains Uncertain

    SALFORD, ENGLAND — The Ambassador Super Cinema has changed hands again, according to a report on ManchesterOnline.

    The new owner, McDermott Developments, a local real estate development company, had originally planned to demolish the theater and replace it with 31 apartments. However, these plans do not appear to be finalized.

    As Andrew Darbyshire, a McDermott developer, put it: “We bought it with the benefit of planning permission. But I do not want to say anything yet regarding our intentions. We don’t know what to do yet.”

  • December 15, 2003

    Regent Theatre to Close January 28

    ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA — According to a report in the Adelaide Advertiser, the Regent Theatre will close January 28, due to a dispute between the Hoyts theater chain and the building’s landlord, St. Peter’s College.

    The closure comes as a surprise to the Regent’s landlord, according to Paul Fielding, business director for St. Peters:

    “I still haven’t got their sign-off to withdraw from their tenancy,” he said. “But, in any case, it’s a sudden thing and we haven’t got our mind around what you do with a large empty space like that.”

  • December 5, 2003

    New Mission Theatre to be Destroyed?

    There should be news anytime now about the new owner of the New Mission Theatre. Reportedly the highest bidder wants to destroy it. I’ll be in touch.

  • December 1, 2003

    Von Lee Cinema to Reopen as a Restaurant/Bar?

    BLOOMINGTON, IN — According to a report in the Indiana Daily Student, a hearing will be held this coming Wednesday to determine the fate of the Von Lee Cinema. At question is whether or not the theater’s current owner should be granted a liquor license, which is required for the theater to become a restaurant and bar. Opponents of the plan — namely, the “Save The Von Lee” organization — argue that the Von Lee should remain a cinema.

  • November 24, 2003

    Pleasant Hill Officials Say Dome Is Out With The Old

    PLEASANT HILL, CA — Plans for a new retail/entertainment complex may mean the end of Pleasant Hill’s beloved dome theater. Now operated as an art house under Century Theatres' CineArts banner, the dome opened in 1967 and is a treasured local landmark. As Contra Costa Times reporter Corey Lyons reports, Century plans to replace the classic dome with a new “two-story theater with six screens, an escalator and lobbies that offer expansive views of the area.”

  • November 12, 2003

    More Info on the Avenal Theatre Fire

    AVENAL, CA — The Fresno Bee has more information about the fallout from Saturday’s fire at the Avenal Theatre. According to the article, the fire damaged and/or destroyed a total of eight businesses in the downtown Avenal area, totalling at least $1 million in damage. [uPDATE: another report from local TV station indicates that Avenal city leaders have voted to rebuild the theater.]

  • November 10, 2003

    CHAS III Theater Sold to Non-Profit Group

    JENKINTOWN, PA — According to an article in Friday’s Philadelphia Inquirer, a nonprofit group is set to purchase the Chas III theater in hopes to revitalize the city’s downtown area. The theater, which will be rechristened as the Hiway Theatre, will primarily show arthouse fare, with a mix of classic, independent, and foreign films.

  • October 27, 2003

    Avalon Theatre in Danger?

    MILWAUKEE, WI — according to this report in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Craig Ellsworth, the current owner of the Avalon Theatre, has revealed plans to convert the historic theater into office space should his company fail to find a tenant interesting in reviving the Avalon.

  • October 23, 2003

    Odeon Cinema in St Austell, England to be Demolished

    ST. AUSTELL, ENGLAND — A plan to redevelop the town center of St Austell, in Cornwall, would include the demolition of the 1936 Art Deco Odeon Cinema, which would be replaced by a new four-screen cinema, according to a report in the Western Morning News. Though conservationists are campaigning to save the Odeon, both developers and the conservation organization, English Heritage, seem to agree that since a remodeling from the 70s, there isn’t enough left of the original design to warrant saving the Odeon. One conservation consultant said that the cinema now looks more like “an industrial shed.”