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Thank you! That would be a great idea. If the Ridgewood Theatre is proposed for the NY State Historic Preservation Office’s “State & Nat'l Register of Historic Places,” and is deemed eligible for listing by a professional SHPO regional surveyor, it would be the owner’s option to support it and apply for tax credits &/or matching grants, which would be advantageous in restoring and upgrading the exterior and interior features, while respecting the theater’s overall historic integrity. The website which includes links to various options is http://nysparks.state.ny.us/shpo/grants/index.htm In this case, the SHPO regional representative is Virginia Bartos:
It would do much more harm having greedy developers win out by discarding our gems in a landfill. Something is better than nothing when it comes to preservation, especially when there is little that can be done.
Howard, if a historic theater was facing demolition, the facade and some interior architectural attributes could be transported elsewhere, and resurrected. It’s true some history would be sacrificed, but if it was facing imminent demolition, it would certainly be better than seeing a theater in a landfill.
The Ridgewood Theatre is staying put, and may be landmarked shortly. No worries.
UPDATE: Great News, but your help is still essential, so please continue signing our petition and posting a comment! On Tuesday, February 17, 2009, the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission will make a motion to calendar the Ridgewood Theatre’s facade. This is the first step, and then comes a public hearing at a later date, followed by a motion to designate the theater an Individual Landmark. Testimony will be taken during a future public hearing. Stay tuned!
Howard, if the theater was facing demolition, then the AL couple would have been interested in transporting the facade and some interior architectural attributes and resurrecting it elsewhere. I know some history would be sacrificed, but if it was facing imminent demolition, it would certainly be better than seeing a prime architectural work in a landfill.
UPDATE: Great News!!! On Tuesday, February 17, 2009, the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission will make a motion to calendar the Ridgewood Theatre’s facade. This is the first step, and then comes a public hearing at a later date, followed by a motion to designate the theater an Individual Landmark. Testimony will be taken during a future public hearing. Stay tuned!
Great News!!! On Tuesday, February 17, 2009, the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission will make a motion to calendar the Ridgewood Theatre’s facade. This is the first step, and then comes a public hearing at a later date, followed by a motion to designate the theater an Individual Landmark. Testimony will be taken during a future public hearing. Stay tuned!
Hi Newt, Thank you for the update! When you drove by, did you notice if the windows are boarded up, and if a wooden fence is surrouding the theater? Is the building being prepped for demolition? If so, and it won’t be landmarked, then I will notify the party who may “transport” the theater elsewhere. Please let me know as many specifics as you possibly can. Thank you!
Thank you, Newt!
Hi Warren! To help coordinate a revamped preservation effort with people i.e. Ed Tracey & Tom Stathes, do I have your permission to save your RKO Keith’s photos to flickr for placement in a flickr album? I would grant you credit, if you prefer. It would be a huge help. Please let me know. Thanks!
This is the Loew’s Canal Theatre’s property profile on the NYC Dept of Buildings website:
The Canal Theatre is New Building #404, filed for in 1926, which is NB 404-26
These are the Certificate of Occupancies on file:
C of O, Sept 8, 1927:
C of O, Sept 20, 1927:
C of O, Nov 26, 1962 (when retail took over the first story):
I am seeking a theater a fellow preservationist/buyer can transport, but please tell me the name of the theater. Thank you!
Thank you very much, John, and all enthusiasts who have supported the Ridgewood Theatre cause, and signed the petition in support of landmarking the facade and theater lobby. The NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission says they are interested in calendaring the facade for a public hearing in the near future, which would determine its eligibility as a NYC Individual Landmark. Nothing is official since it is not in writing. Therefore, now is the time to continue advocating for landmark status. Please sign the petition, post a comment, and circulate the link to ALL CONTACTS in your e-mail address book: View link The LPC said they may consider the theater lobby once the theater is open for a certain time period. Interior Landmarks must be open by law, when first designated.
Also, routinely check www.myspace.com/ridgewoodtheatre, which has been updated. It is likely it will continue showing films.
Hi All! Michael is here, have no fear! I just noticed all your comments from today, in response to the NY Times article by Ralph Blumenthal. First of all, take a huge sigh of relief, since the Ridgewood Theatre is here to stay!
I was supposed to be interviewed on the Cheyenne Diner & the Moondance Diner, which I spared via transport, and to my astonishment, there was not even a mention of my role. I was briefly asked about the Ridgewood Theatre, since the NYT reporter stated “the AL couple” might be interested in making an offer on this theater (besides the Cheyenne Diner they purchased). I explained to the couple earlier this week that the theater facade may be landmarked, and the Ridgewood Theatre owner wants to keep it in his possession. If it was going to be demolished, then it would be a different story, but it’s not.
There was never any solid plan to move the Ridgewood Theatre to AL, but plans circulated between the couple & I, to save a different theater (anywhere in the U.S.) via transport that’s imminently endangered, whether that mean the facade &/or any interior architectural attributes. I never mentioned anything regarding Ridgewood Theatre seats and furnishings. I don’t know where the reporter got that from. I advocate for historic architecture and not furniture, lol.
I was disappointed when first reading this article, and had to do a double-take since my diner brokering credits were omitted, and the theater issue was boggled by misinformation. I am surprised with the NY Times, a reputable newspaper. I was photographed on the theater steps due to my efforts to landmark it only, as well as find a tenant or a new owner, if the current owner planned to sell. That was purely my intention, and that of the majority of supporters. The NYT expressed an interest in photos of myself in front of the Cheyenne Diner during sign removal day, and they were also interested in documenting me in front of the diner as of current. I guess they had a change of heart for some bizarre reason.
What is the current status of the theater? Any chances of preservation? Please let me know. Thanks!
Please let me know what the current status of the theater is. If it’s facing demolition, I have an idea that’s truly “outside of the box.”
Everyone is welcome to view and comment on my Ridgewood Theatre flickr photoset, which will be updated every so often:
Any updates? Please let me know as soon as you can. I may have some ideas that are outside of the box, if the theater is still “imminently endangered.” You can post online &/or e-mail me at
Architecturally speaking, the Ridgewood Theatre has one of the most elaborate theater facades and theater lobbies. It is one of Thomas Lamb’s earliest operations. Much has been hidden in the auditoriums, but is restoration-worthy. I believe nothing is impossible. That was very elaborate, and still has great potential. Portions of the interior can be designated once the theater was to reopen, after a specific time period.