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Thanks for your comments. The mosaics were intact and in good condition until their destruction in 2005. The mosaic ticket booth bearing the Trylon Monument was jackhammered in July 2005, and the mosaic and terrazzo floor which also depicted the monument and Art Deco chevrons was cemented over for a front that began disintegrating upon installment.
This is a view from 2002, which was 3 years after the Trylon Theater closed its doors. This is before the beautiful Art Deco 1939 World’s Fair-themed detail in the entrance pavilion was destroyed during the 2005 demolition process.
Thank you, Bway.
Hi everyone, I just uploaded numerous Trylon Theater photos under the photo thread. Please feel free to post your comments. The views range from the theater’s opening in 1939 to its closure in December 1999, and also include some views of the insensitive alterations in summer 2005.
The Trylon Theater was featured in the 1941 Theatre Catalog
When the Trylon Theater was taken over by Ohr Natan in 2005, this unique Art Deco mosaic floor in the entrance pavilion was paved over with cement. It is still “restorable!”
In the “Now showing” display case, you can see the reflection of the former Jay Dee Bakery’s retro neon sign.
Trylon Theater’s Art Deco entrance pavilion in 1999 bearing the Trylon Monument, Courtesy of Michael Perlman
Trylon Theater’s Art Deco facade & entrance pavilion in 1999, Courtesy of Michael Perlman
In the upper left-hand corner, the vertical Art Deco streamlined detail is peeking through the vitrolite paneling.
How can I add my Trylon Theater photos directly to this thread? Please let me know. Thanks!
Are there any quotes from the Landmarks Preservation Commission? It is of the utmost significance to calendar a public hearing for the Ridgewood Theatre’s interior. This is famed architect Thomas Lamb’s earliest and most intact example of a theater throughout NYC!
The Queens Chronicle quotes potentially one of the developers/owners as stating the following:
Though the property, known as the Trylon Triangle was only recently acquired, Babaev said the company is already working on designs for the space.
“We’re thinking retail on the ground floor, a community center on the second floor and residential from three to eight,” he said. “We want to RESTORE the front entrance of the building to resemble what it looked like in 1939 when it opened. We want to bring back the essence of the building’s history and keep all of the tenants.”
What are some of your immediate thoughts?
In addition, does anyone have historic photos (personal or company-produced) showing the Trylon Theater?
These are some Trylon Theater photos I uploaded to flickr over the years:
The Queens Ledger-/Forest Hills Times features “Midway Theatre 70th Anniversary Benefits Alzheimer’s” by Michael Perlman: http://www.foresthillstimes.com/view/full_story/20349385/article-Midway-Theatre-70th-Anniversary-Benefits-Alzheimer-s
On 9/24, patrons saw Hitchcock’s “Rear Window” (1954) & the proceeds benefited the Alzheimer’s Association (NYC Chapter). The Midway opened in 1942 & was named after WWII’s Battle of Midway. It was designed in the Art Moderne style by America’s foremost theater architect, Thomas W. Lamb. Please share & feel free to post a comment on the article link.
“Coming Attractions: Legendary Midway Theatre To Turn 70” in the Forest Hills Times/Queens Ledger by Michael Perlman.
Mark your calendar for a 70th anniversary celebration, likely on September 24, 2012. Let’s preserve & commemorate our Art Moderne theater designed by the great Thomas Lamb, & named after WWII’s Battle of Midway.
If you would like to share your theater memories or experiences or any comment, please feel free to post on the article link:
A thank you to all who contributed to my article’s interviews.
P.S. The theater can always be incorporated into a residential development above. The loss of the remaining ornate features would be detrimental. If the owner cares about his/her reputation, they will work with us.
Does anyone know the owner’s name? Maybe some of us can call for a meeting with the owner & the councilmember. Thoughts?
I agree. SWC deserves an award for his prominent role in documenting and publicizing this theater. We have proof of the great extent of architectural details in the auditorium, lounges, & other areas, which remain by the foremost theater architect Thomas W. Lamb. Don’t believe anything about what the politicians & developer(s) say.
Thank you for sharing this article. Let’s hope that performing arts center plans gain momentum, and no remaining interior detail is sacrificed, but rather restored and revitalized.
Thank you, Jim. I wonder what the DOB would classify as “debris.” Hmm…
Those were some of the last films to play at the theater before its sudden closure in March 2008. You are welcome to visit Friends of The Ridgewood Theatre on our Facebook. I founded a group dedicated towards preserving & creatively reusing this 1916 gem designed by Thomas Lamb. The facade is now landmarked, but now we are focusing on preserving the interior and finding a historically-sensitive tenant, perhaps involved in performing arts: http://on.fb.me/RidgewoodTheatre
Thank you, Jim! I appreciate your help and the progress report. I visited the DOB link you posted, and I am happy that it is deemed a priority A case. Let’s hope it isn’t what we think.
I appreciate everyone’s concerns & updates. There are no active permits on the DOB site as of this writing.
This is the complaint I found on the website:
NYC Department of Buildings
Overview for Complaint #:4490907 = ACTIVE
Complaint at: 5527 MYRTLE AVENUE BIN: 4082442 Borough: QUEENS ZIP: 11385
Re: ILLEGAL GUT RENOVATION OF AN OLD MOVIE THREATR
Category Code: 05 PERMIT – NONE (BUILDING/ PA/ DEMO ETC.)
DOB District: N/A
Assigned To: QUEENS BOROUGH OFFICE Priority: BReceived: 08/11/2011 15:26 Block: 3451 Lot: 7 Community Board: 405Owner: 55-27 MYRTLE AVE REALTY GROUP,
Last Inspection: 11/30/2011 – – BY BADGE # 2188
Disposition: 12/09/2011 – C1 – INSPECTOR UNABLE TO GAIN ACCESS – 1ST ATTEMPT –
Comments: FRONT GATE IS PADLOCKED. LS-4 POSTED
In addition to the historic interior being at risk, safety is at stake with no permits, let alone when permits are in place. The facade is now landmarked, & much of any interior work could effect the landmarked portion, and should be brought to the attention of the Landmarks Preservation Commission.
Dept of Buildings website:
There are no permits on the DOB site. In addition to the historic interior being at risk, safety is at stake with no permits, let alone when permits are in place. Have you inquired with 311? The facade is now landmarked, & much of any interior work could effect the landmarked portion, and should be brought to the attention of the Landmarks Preservation Commission. Dept of Buildings website:
The people who favor this site’s extensive history need more say in the process. We are already overpopulated. We don’t need more dagger-style condos, but a creatively reused historic theater as a performing arts center, with community spaces. Enough of the “de-landmarked” auditorium exists to salvage and restore it for ALL to enjoy; not some mere condo owners. If we let every developer & politician to proceed (without applying our rights as constituents), then we might as well become a superhighway with skyscrapers on Queens land that can’t bear it.
Thank you for your site visit details. I think the plaster dust and some trash that is visible is the result of the removal of the multiplexing in 2009-2010. All seems to be at a standstill. We are doing what we can, in regard to outreach to the appropriate parties, in order for this cherished theater to have a future in our communities.