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The total was a shambles, I don’t know how much was left to restore after the water damage. There were literally hundreds of holes in the roof.
I have to say, while it’s sad it can no longer be a theater anymore, they did an absolutely FANTASTIC job with the exterior conversion and restoration.
The exterior shell is better than total demolition, so a piece of history is in fact preserved.
Radio City may have been planned to be only live theater, but it never was only live theater at the beginning, as mentioned, two weeks after opening it showed it’s first movie. They had to know it would be showing film two weeks earlier…. :)
Again, even if the theaters are used as churches instead of theater (movies), it’s still better than gutted and turned into a drug store or something….or worse, torn down.
As for the Hollywood Theater (Mark Hellinger), as far as I know, the theater is maintained beautifully, even if used for a church. Would you rather have seen it turned into retail, or some of the far worse things that could have been done to it?
Hollywood-Mark Hellinger Theatre
As for Radio City Music Hall, it was always meant to show film, as well as live theater. It showed it’s first movie in January 1933….within two weeks of opening.
It appears the old Imperial Theater now operates as a warehouse, judging by this google street view:
Click Link Here
Wow, that is just wonderful!!
The perfect example of why often times “churches” have “saved” a theater….and now even returning to it’s natural use, at least partly.
For all those that “knock” the Tabernacle of Prayer in Jamaica (former Valencia Theater), because of the garish colors they painted….remember it’s churches like that that saved many theaters.
Based on the street view which says it was taken in June 2011, it’s now a used appliance store. Ironically, right around when Ken uploaded his 2006 photo to the site!!
Does anyone know if any of the theater’s ornamentation remains inside in the drug store.
John, did you ever compare the street view with the historic photo posted? It appears the whole right side of the building was ripped off some feet in, and a new side wall placed ¾ of the way in when they widened Flatlands Ave!!
Not only that, the CVS moved out about a year ago, and the “store” is now vacant.
I never understand all the mocking that takes place in regard to the Loews Valencia. Sure, it would be nicer if it was a theater again, and it is “sad” that it’s a church instead of such, but this church has saved the Valencia. While yes, the colors they painted the interior are garish at best, what would you rather have, the interior gutted into a drug store or something instead? or worse, leveled?
The Valencia is completely intact, maintained, and good shape. Who cares if the colors are garish….all that beautiful plasterwork could be gone instead, and prescriptions sold there instead.
Interestingly, all what remains is the candelabra style lighting in front of the foundation of the former theater.
jgraif, Cypress Ave is not the Brooklyn-Queens border.
The Madison is and always was in Queens.
The Border has been in a zig-zag line since the Madison was built. The Brooklyn Border traces Cypress Ave from Newtown Creek to Menahan St. It then zig zags down to St Nicholas Ave. It then precedes to Gates Ave. At that intersection, it then goes down to WYckoff Ave. It then Traces Wyckoff Ave across (and behind the Madison) to Eldert St where it goes down to Irving St, whichg then traces it through the Cemetery of the Evergreens.
This is a cool concert venue….but not a thing remains of the former interior ornamentation. Is bare brick walls and bare steel. You can see you are in the balcony where you walk through sloped beams to enter the main floor.
Thanks so much! It’s nice to finally see a photo of this theater!
The tax photos are from the 1980’s, and there is a wealth of great photos there! Especially of Bushwick where things were at their worst.
I wish they would publish the 1930’s tax photos too online.
I was afraid of that when I saw them building the new CVS on the site of the old Meyer Chevrolet. I guess the Oasis will begin yet another chapter, and I hope that doesn’t include total demolition, even if the building as been partly destroyed by fire, partly demolished, and so forth. We shall see.
Is there any theater ornamentation left in the store?
In all likeliness, the theater was built as new construction on the site of the old Trolley barn. When seeing the original facade of the building, it screams “theater”. There is an old photo that shows the right most upper corner of the building was smashed off, probably when the el was built, and to facilitate the curve for the trains. So I am going to assume the building was built just before the el was placed in front of it. The el used to end at Wyckoff station, and then go down a ramp to ride on the surface to Metropolitan Ave. The el used to not turn right onto Palmetto St like it does now, it went anothe50 or 100 feet further onto Myrtle, and then turnaround a building that used to be at the corner of Myrtle and Palmetto (where the large brick building is now, where Koletti’s used to be). It then came down a ramp around the Ridgewood Grove site, before street running on Palmetto to Onderdonk Ave where it turned down it’s own ROW as the el does. In any event, when the el was extended through Ridgewood in 1914, that’s when the sharper turn was made to go around Palmetto as it does now. It is also quite possible the corner was knocked off even at a later date when they added the catwalk for workers to walk along the track, which isn’t original to the el.
Graffiti is not just a problem on ground level, the roof level has a severe problem with graffiti too, and it’s been up there for decades, people can see it with every M train that passes the building, it should be removed up there too.
Well, I hope you are feeling better Peter.
Good to hear from you.
Matt, thank you so much for posting those wonderful photos!
Peter, where have you been!
The theater’s current name (if open) is the name that is used for the theater. That’s to be consistent on the site, and it’s the policy.
Personally, I like the way these photos are presented in the messages, they are very vivid, and striking.
Hi John, I am keeping the same hope alive for the Ridgewood Theater too… “It’s not over till the fat lady sings”, so they say…. I was disappointed in the recent photos posted of the Ridgewood. In just 4 short years, the theater’s paint is really peeling inside, probably because the building is no longer heated in the winter, or Air Conditioned in the summer, so the extreme cold, heat and humidity have already taken it’s toll.
And in the 70’s and 80’s it was a hellhole. Better what it is now, than what it was then. The refurbishment of Times Square didn’t destroy the “old” Times Square, the 70’s and 80’s destroyed the old Times Square.