Loew's Triboro Theatre

2804 Steinway Street,
Astoria, NY 11103

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JohnRAllman
JohnRAllman on February 20, 2004 at 10:25 pm

I think Warren is right about the elevators in the Loew’s Triboro being put out of use by the early 1940s. I started going to the Triboro in 1943 and don’t remember ever having seen those elevators. But then I wouldn’t have been allowed to go to the mezzanine or balcony unattended. But the restrooms were on the 2nd floor, as I remember. Who could forget all that faux Renaissance interior.

RobertR
RobertR on February 20, 2004 at 4:06 pm

The Astoria theatre which just closed last year could also have been used for live shows, but it has been destroted also. I was amused when I read about the Queens Borough President fighting the Landmark designation. The one who replaced him was no better. I am not sure if you are aware of the Amphitheatre from the 1939 Worlds Fair in Flushing Meadows park. It had been unused for a few years and finally there was alot of intrest in restoring it and even a promoter willing to contract to put on shows there. Because of a fear from some well connected residents in affluent and somewhat nearby Forest Hills and Kew Gardens all of a sudden an aspestos issue was brought up and the BP used a special fund that required no community board approval to have the structure torn down. These residents were concerned about what kind of concerts would be given there. Meanwhile the amphitheatre is in the middle of a park and not close by to any homes. All this was carried out despite ongoing plans drawn up, meetings and negotiations with the concert promoter. Another Queens landmark destroyed.

JohnRAllman
JohnRAllman on February 17, 2004 at 12:37 am

Warren, Thanks for that on the old Steinway building. Next time I’m there, I’ll look for it. You’re right about the uses they might have put the Triboro to. A great loss. The interior of the Triboro is still very real in my head.

JohnRAllman
JohnRAllman on February 16, 2004 at 9:15 pm

SWarren, you’re right in my zone, even down to calling your grandmother Nana (my mother’s mother we called Big Nana, my father’s Little Nana). Anyway, I remember, certainly, the Steinway and the Astoria (which closed only couple of years ago). Where the Steinway used to be is now ,I believe, a parking lot. We saw old movies at the Steinway, including some horror classics. The first time I ever went to a movie at night by mself was at the Steinway. And I remember that long walk from the subway which I used to use for commuting back and forth to my job around 1952-1954.
I saw most of the films you mention at the Triboro. “Jungle Book” (with Sabu, right?) and “National Velevet” and “Two Years Before the Mast” (with Alan Ladd) for sure.
Once in a great whille I’m on Steinway Street and marvel at how even more crowded it is than it used to me, esp. on week-ends. And there’s a much greater ethnic mix as well. Still a vital place to live.
John

JohnRAllman
JohnRAllman on February 15, 2004 at 4:44 pm

Many thanks to Warren and William for their info on the Loew’s Triboro. I lived on 28th avenue, between 41st and 42nd Streets. The Triboro was only a breath away. I started attending Saturday matinees in 1943. My collection of poems, LOEW’S TRIBORO, will be published by New Directions in April 2004. On the cover is a picture of the Triboro marquee, and inside on the frontispiece is a picture of the entire building. JohnAllman

William
William on November 15, 2003 at 6:29 pm

The Loew’s Triboro Theatre was located at Steinway Street and 28th Ave..

Johnallman
Johnallman on May 22, 2002 at 9:44 pm

Many thanks to William McQuade and Manny for their help in identifying when the Loew’s Triboro was demolished. What a shame, to have lost such a magnificent building and history. I’ll have a new book of poems out around 2003 or 2004 called LOEW’S TRIBORO,from New Directions,and I hope the cover will be a photo of the Loew’s Triboro.

WilliamMcQuade
WilliamMcQuade on March 20, 2002 at 4:02 pm

The theater was demolished in 1974. I was involved in the effort to have the theater designated as a landmark. Landmark Preservation Commission had already voted to make it a landmark.

Unfortunately, like everything in New York, politics entered into it. the decision had already been made before a Board of Estimate meeting by the Queens Borough President ( very anti preservationist) that he would vote against making it a landmark. All the other board members voted lockstep behind him (I scratch your back and you scratch mine etc). Although I helped to obtain over 8000 signatures on petitions to save it, few people showed up at the Board meeting. I feel to this day if more support was shown at the board meeting, the results might have been different. Astoria went downhill after that and now their last movie theater Astoria) just closed. Steinway street once had 4 theaters. Now they have none. an interesting footnote is that the public official (Queens Borough president) who basically killed the landmark designation committed suicide a few years later due to a growing scandal which he though would engulf him

MANNY
MANNY on December 6, 2001 at 9:21 pm

I LIVED ON STEINWAY STREET ½ BLOCK FROM THIS THEATER AND ACROSS FROM THE ASTORIA THEATRE LOCATED 1 BLOCK SOUTH OF THE LOEWS..

I SPENT MANY HOURS IN THE LOEWS IT WAS A MAGNIFICENT THEATRE HUGE WITH BALCONIES AND FACADES BUILT WITH THE OUTDOOR THEATRES OF ANCIENT TIMES IN MIND WITH DETAIL OF HAVING THE CEILING REPLICATING THE NIGHT SKY WITH TWINKLING LIGHTS REPRESENTING STARS…

THEY TORE THIS THEATRE DOWN AROUND 1970 TO PUT UP 2 FAMILY HOUSING WITH STORES BELOW THEM..

WHAT A CRIME. WHAT A SHAME. THIS JUST BEFORE HISTORICAL PRESERVATION SOCIETIES CAME TO THE FOREFRONT…

IF IT WASNT FOR JACKIE ONASSIS WE WOULD HAVE LOST GRAND CENTRAL STATION…SHE SAVED IT AFTER SHE FOUND OUT WHAT THEY DID TO THE GRAND AND ELEGANT PENN STATION….

Johnallman
Johnallman on November 10, 2001 at 12:44 am

I went to the movies at the Loew’s Triboro from 1943 to about 1956 and would like any information I can get on when it was demolished. I loved the place and remember vaudeville performances on Tuesday evenings there. The Triboro shaped my childhood in ways that cannot be measured.