Preservation Alert

  • March 23, 2004

    Help Save the Bengies!

    BALTIMORE, MD — Gregg Anderson alerted us to the fact that Baltimore’s Bengies Drive-In Theatre has an important zoning hearing on Thursday. If you live near the Baltimore area, please consider attending the meeting to show your support for the theater!

    From the Bengies newsletter:

    “Dear Great Patrons of the Bengies Drive-In Theatre,

    In order to save the Bengies Drive-In Theatre, I must act upon my agreement to purchase the property it sits upon. I must take the zoning of the property and change it from residential to commercial, so that I can set other things into place to generate enough income to support the mortgage.

    I have put this request in to Baltimore county, Maryland, and the first of 2 PUBLIC hearings is set for this coming THURSDAY, March 25. It is a public hearing that will be HELD AT 7PM at PARKVILLE HIGH School. [THERE WILL BE A SECOND PUBLIC HEARING LATER THIS SUMMER] Both hearings are VERY important to our cause.

  • March 11, 2004

    Danforth Music Hall Now Closed?

    TORONTO, CANADA — Yet another historic cinema in Toronto is closed. The Danforth Music Hall, which started life as Allen’s Danforth Theatre in 1920, has been closed since the third week of February.

    Since 1998 the Music Hall has been a member of the Festival Cinemas chain, showing second run films mostly with the occasional concert or play thrown into the schedule. It is the last operational theatre built the Allen’s chain. All its sister theatres have been either demolished or converted into other uses.

  • March 4, 2004

    Harrogate Royal Hall

    NORTH YORKSHIRE , ENGLAND — Harrogate Council met on Wednesday to discuss the future of the troubled Royal Hall, according to a report in the Harrogate Today.

    The concrete in the balcony is crumbling in this Grade 2* listed building designed by pre-eminent UK theater architect Frank Matcham. Repair costs have been estimated at £11 million (including full restoration of this beautiful hall) and the Heritage lottery fund has awarded £6 million towards the cost – but Harrogate say they cannot afford the balance.

    It was used as a cinema on a regular basis up until the 1930s.


  • March 3, 2004

    Notting Hill’s Coronet Saved?

    LONDON, ENGLAND — According to a spokesperson for Colliers CRE, the organization handling the sale of the 105 year-old Coronet Cinema, “New plans involve improving the building and maintaining the cinema”, but the spokesperson could not elaborate further.

    The existence of the Notting Hill movie palace, featured in the Julia Roberts-Hugh Grant film “Notting Hill”, was rumored to be in danger.

    Read the full report on the ITV website.

  • March 1, 2004

    Sister of Flushing’s Keith Needs Federal “Offset” Funding to Keep the Curtain Rising

    HUNTINGTON, WV — Huntington’s Keith-Albee could meet the wrecker’s ball due to federal and state subsidizing of a competing 14-screen stadium multiplex one block away.

    The Transit Authority, which is administering the federal portion of the project, claims it has complied with all historic and environmental laws. However, the TTA director claims that the Keith is not on the Federal Register.

  • February 23, 2004

    Help Landmark the Avalon Before It’s Too Late!

    MILWAUKEE, WI — A meeting will be held next week to seek local landmark designation for the memorable Avalon Theater, according to the e-mail below and the Avalon’s page here on Cinema Treasures.

    If you can be there to advocate for it and to place it in the context of remaining movie palaces nationwide, it will be a good deed you do! The city needs to see that it has a greater value, and only us theater buffs can supply that significance.

  • February 18, 2004

    Raymond Theatre Owners Move Forward with Redevelopment Plans; Theater to be Converted into Apartment/Retail/Office Complex

    PASADENA, CA — Gina Zamparelli at the Friends of the Raymond sent us this urgent news about the fate of the Raymond Theatre:

    “Dear Friends of the Raymond Theatre:

    We have very urgent news. Please see the overview directly below, and the expanded version for further details.


    The owners of the Raymond Theatre have chosen to move forward with Design Review of their project to convert the Raymond Theatre to an apartment/retail/office complex. The tentative (but not confirmed) date of the Design Review hearing is March 15, 2004. We will let everyone know the final date of the hearing as soon as it is confirmed.

  • Art Deco Gem Ambassador Cinema Faces The Bulldozers

    SALFORD, ENGLAND — It looks like the end is in sight for the wonderful Ambassador Super Cinema. Somehow, this building has remained virtually intact and in great condition with most of its original fittings.

  • February 16, 2004

    CONFIRMED: Alexandria to Close After 4:15pm Show

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA — “Vic”, a Cinema Treasures user and Assistant Manager at the Alexandria, confirmed that the theater will close later today in a comment posted on the Alexandria’s theater page.

    “Unfortunately, the Alexandria has run out of time, as the doors will open for the last time on Febuary 16th. The last show will be at 4:15pm. I hope to see anyone who cares for the theater therea as i will be the Assistant Manager On Duty for the Final Shows… R.I.P Alexandria (1923 – 2004)”

  • February 14, 2004

    BREAKING NEWS: Alexandria to Close Monday?

    SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Late last night, the San Francisco Neighborhood Theater Foundation alerted its members that the UA Alexandria may be closing on Monday.

    The group, dedicated to preserving and maintaining San Francisco’s wonderful neighborhood theaters, has been urging prospective buyers to continue operating the Alexandria, but the identity of the new owner remains unknown.