RKO Keith's Theatre

135-35 Northern Boulevard,
Flushing, NY 11354

Unfavorite 45 people favorited this theater

Showing 176 - 200 of 1,224 comments

Jeffrey1955 on September 27, 2011 at 9:39 pm

Paradise, your comments are quite odd. First you respond to a post saying the FAA shot down the developer’s plan…then you say you didn’t realize the FAA was involved. Perhaps you weren’t responding to that particular post and it was just a coincidence…yet you say you haven’t been following the theatre for months. Then you say you “assumed” the city was denying the property owner his rights…when there has never been the slightest indication on this site or elsewhere that anybody from the city or the community board has ever objected to anything that was proposed — period. You ask whether the developer should “be denied the ability to pursue a legal coarse (sic) of action…simply because it is not consistent with the wishes of certain disinterested individuals?” And those “disinterested” individuals would be who — those of us on this site who have been critical of the plans? If anything, we’ve expressed more of an “interest” in this property than most of those in the area who don’t seem to care what happens to it. Your entire argument seems to center around developers' property rights — no matter what the property, the history, the surroundings, or the alternatives. You appear to have dropped in on the discussion simply to express your belief in the absolute sanctity of property rights, and despite your lukewarm assertion that you “admire” the RKO Keith’s, I find that questionable. There have been numerous arguments raised here having nothing to do with the theatre itself, but about the density, overcrowding and traffic problems of this neighborhood and how this project can only make those worse. So I ask you, is there anything a developer could propose to do in order to squeeze as much profit out of a piece of property as possible, to which you WOULD object? Or is it enough to say “Money talks, everybody else walks”?

NativeForestHiller on September 27, 2011 at 3:06 pm


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.

Bway on September 27, 2011 at 2:21 pm

Paradise, the Federal Aviation Administration has nothing to do with the city….the plan WAS approved by the city if I am not mistaken. Why should the city have to pay for something they have nothing to do with?

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on September 27, 2011 at 2:13 pm

Where’s the damn “like” button?!

Jeffrey1955 on September 27, 2011 at 1:18 pm

Paradise, you’re missing the point. The city had nothing to do with this — it was the FAA. The height of his proposed building violated LaGuardia airspace.

But your point is well taken. Let’s allow every property owner to do whatever they wish with their property to generate income (oh, wait — isn’t that what’s already happening in Queens? Have you visited Queens Crap or Forgotten NY lately?), or be compensated by the city. Of course, “the city” means your taxes.

SWCphotography on September 27, 2011 at 11:43 am

The RKO Keith’s demolition and rental apartment scheme by the developer was again shot down by the FAA on 9/23/11!

Jeffrey1955 on August 12, 2011 at 2:29 am

Quote of the Week: “It’s approved and in compliance. Community Board 7 would not have approved it if it were not,” said Nussbaum.

ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha… cough.

BobbyS on August 11, 2011 at 11:59 pm

“Drama at the Keiths” Now Playing at RKO Keith’s…

SWCphotography on August 4, 2011 at 12:02 am

In the rush to demolish part of Flushing’s history, this fallen column got left behind in the balcony:

SWCphotography on July 31, 2011 at 2:08 am

It’s stunning that so much stunning detail survives in a space heavily advertised as gutted: This section from the de-landmarked auditorium is about 1 sq ft of 34,600 sq ft (includes the balcony)

BobbyS on July 30, 2011 at 10:38 am

Thanks for pix’s. This theater must have been a stunner when it opened and operated!

SWCphotography on July 30, 2011 at 12:19 am

Fireplace in Ladies Smoking Room No. 144 (de-landmarked); July 2011.

Jeffrey1955 on July 27, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Wow, look at that utter devastation! What a shame there is “nothing left” of the auditorium worth preserving…

p.s. For what it’s worth (not much) my comment did, indeed, get posted at Queens Chronicle.

SWCphotography on July 26, 2011 at 10:19 pm

From the auditorium, July 2011:

Jeffrey1955 on July 15, 2011 at 12:48 pm

I’ve submitted a response comment on Queens Chronicle; we’ll see if it gets approved and posted.

robboehm on July 14, 2011 at 12:08 pm

Sounds similar to the slogan about the Plaza in Patchogue – Blight to light. Big deal, they’re going to tear it down and put up a fence like they did with other blighted properties rather than let PlazaMAC exercise their plan to renew the space. The situation of the Keith’s is not dissimilar.

Jeffrey1955 on July 14, 2011 at 12:35 am

Sorry again; this seems like deja vu. I must be developing fatal degradation of my sarcasm meter.

BobbyS on July 14, 2011 at 12:27 am

Of course I was not serious about being happy with the lobby plans. I read all of the earlier posts. But then again, no lobby at all would be worse. Loved your Roxy photos Ed Solero!

Jeffrey1955 on July 13, 2011 at 11:58 pm

More like Thomas Huang failed in his attempt to completely destroy the theater…he was stopped before he could finish the job, and had to settle for mortally wounding it.

BobbyS, I trust you are not seriously happy that “the ornate lobby will be saved and restored!” Go back and read some of the earlier discussion about what that actually entails.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on July 13, 2011 at 11:25 pm

Thomas Huang “failed at [his] attempt to revamp” the theater?!? More like he successfully torpedoed any hope that the entire structure would ever be returned to viability in its original form!!! Vandalism, is what it was.

BobbyS on July 13, 2011 at 11:13 pm

LuisV, thanks for the update. I was wondering what was happening on the site. I guess we should be happy the ornate lobby will be saved and restored!

LuisV on July 13, 2011 at 4:33 pm

The Condo Plan has received Final Approval. Construction to start by the end of the year. It still calls for the “ornate lobby to be preserved”.

Developer gets final approval to transform landmarked Queens theater into condos July 13, 2011 04:30PM

RKO Keith’s Theater Having just received the final approval from the Board of Standards and Appeals, developer Patrick Thompson is moving ahead with plans to turn the landmarked RKO Keith’s Theater in downtown Flushing, Queens into a 17-story, 357-unit residential rental complex, according to Crain’s.

“I am very delighted and look forward to starting construction,” Thompson said.

At the close of last year, Thompson submitted his plans to the board, which included a modification of plans that had been submitted by its previous owner. The new proposal included increasing the number of units from 200, increasing parking spaces inside the building to 385 from 229 and increasing the retail square footage to 17,000 from 11,000, according to Crain’s.

“This long-neglected site is finally on the road to rebirth as a mixed-used development that will provide much needed housing and a senior center,” Queens Borough President Helen Marshall said. “From the 1920s to the 1980s, when it was vacated, the RKO Keith was a major entertainment Mecca for everything from vaudeville shows to motion pictures.”

Thompson is the third in a string of developers that have taken on the site. Two previous owners — Thomas Huang and Shaya Boymelgreen — failed in their attempts to revamp it.

Thompson expects to start construction by the end of the year. [Crain’s]

JeffM55 on June 5, 2011 at 1:08 am

Okay, it’s getting spooky. Somebody complains about the order of the comments, and they get switched. Somebody complains about the lead photo, and it gets changed. It’s almost like somebody in authority is MONITORING this page… or could it be this is the place where wishes come true? Hm…that gives me an idea…

It sure would be nice if that stupid condo plan was dropped and somebody committed a lot of money to rehab the whole theater! (Oh, and it would also be nice if cash would start shooting out of my computer…)