Showing 1 - 25 of 1,579 comments
The church seems to have made a terrible decision. If the building was renovated in 2000 they probably could have started up operations as is. More renovations could have followed as they got the funds together.
I never knew that huge frieze had been purchased and reinstalled on another building. Amazing to learn it still exists after all these years. I wonder what that building is.
Evanston Round Table, Volume XXI Number 5, March 8, 2018:
Northlight and Developers Withdraw Performing Arts Center Proposal
By Matt Simonette
When it was a synagogue I’ve heard there was a giant neon menorah mounted in the dome.
It’s a shame the interior made it so many years only to get dumbed down. I wonder if some Urban Remains-type place bought those plaster pieces. If they got hauled away whole it would seem to be a possibility.
Thanks Luis. I was only trying to envision how they reused all that space in the building, and if it was an effective redesign. I’m sure none of the interior was saved. It was junk at the end.
In answer to Paul’s question from a few years ago: I saw a picture of the bowling alley interior some years ago. I think it was on two levels, because the photo I saw showed lanes at balcony level underneath the old theater ceiling. I would assume they left the balcony structure in place because it would have been a huge undertaking to remove the trusses and all that cement.
Here’s a comment on a bowling history web site that backs up the two level concept:
They may have installed drop ceilings in later years, because one of the comments in this thread makes it sound like they “discovered” parts of the theater interior during demolition.
Here’s that movie on the 20% tax. What a rip off:
Everyone knows about the impact of TV. But I had no idea the Federal Government was leeching of the theater industry like this.
I didn’t realize they had opened up the front of the auditorium until viewing RickB’s article. It looks like they did a fantastic job.
My only nitpick is the smaller auditoriums in back. I never liked the look of a split vintage auditorium when they were all twinned back in the day, and I still don’t today. If it were my project I think I would have fitted out the back cinemas with drop ceilings and modern wall coverings.
But that shouldn’t be taken as negative commentary. It looks like they did an amazing renovation.
It’s a shame to see it go. But it gets more and more difficult to run a movie theater every year. Renovations with the best of intentions also don’t always work out so well (Skokie Theater for example).
I just hope the new development is not a monstrosity with no respect downtown Highland Park’s character. They put in a new residential building in downtown Wilmette a couple years ago, on the site of an old Ford Dealer. Not only is it taller than any other building nearby, but the building style kind of looks like it belongs in a theme park. All in all is sticks out like a sore thumb.
That’s terrible. Not only does the building destroy the Varsity, it looks like another oversized, cheap-looking development that has no respect for context. I also have to wonder how many more apartments the market can absorb before we get into bubble territory.
When they turned it into a school did they incorporate a gymnasium in there someplace? If they did I’m sure they didn’t save any of the interior. I’m just interested in how they might have fit it into the new design.
Is there such a thing as German Chicago any more?
It would have been better if Katrina had not hit. But the entrance looks better than it did before, by a long shot.
So many times restoration plans come and go. But this guy got it done, and it looks like he did a fantastic job. I had heard the second theater would be in the old balcony. But from photos on the Avalon web site it seems they must have built it out in an adjoining building.
The photo Brian uploaded on July 2 sure looks a lot like the Morse/Coed/Mayne Stage Theater in Rogers Park. Is there a connection?
Article: Joliet leaders weigh-in on Rialto’s future
The Herald-News, Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016
I think the last chain to run the Oriental was M&R, rather than Kohlberg. But I wouldn’t swear to it.
Great photos of the Belmont here:
Haven’t been here in years. But my memory is that the concession stand was designed to blend with the lobby design. Hopefully whatever they put in during this renovation fits just as well.
I used to work across the aisle from that guy in the Darth Maul costume seen at 2:33. He was quite proud of it. Had Star Wars stuff all over his work area. Wonder what ever happened to him.
Passed by yesterday and saw the conversion underway. There is a large hole in the north wall. It is nice that something is finally being done with this property. It’s been an eyesore for quite some time. Uploaded three images to photos section.
Wow, what a gift. It looks like they did a fantastic job. Goes a long way to making up for what they did to the Allen, although I understand it must have had to do with keeping Playhouse Square viable. They must be still be doing well to attract this kind of capital.
Works here too bolorkay. It very well could be that your web browser got hit by some malware.
It’s always amazing when they sit for this long and then come back. The renovation looks fantastic.