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I also mentioned above, that the State agency in charge of building the school had the option of adaptive use for the theater (a community and school theater, a place to hold the HS graduation, etc) but the city demanded it torn down. Probably no amount of campaigning could have saved it.
You could see the original ceiling through holes in the drop ceiling and some of the original windows, which I believe were covered over from the exterior. It was so filled with garbage, you would’ve thought you were in a landfill. That place was horrid and smelled awful… the hotel that is, not the theater. Perhaps my weekend project will to be adding those pictures to the other album.
I was able to go into the Hotel Lincoln, aka Passaic Hotel and got a few pictures in the Ballroom there as well. I can add them to my photobucket album if anyone is interested. Honestly, those pictures are not impressive and that place was pretty creepy and disgusting, so I didn’t add them originally.
Bob, as far as I know most of the interior details were salvaged. Some are possessed by Passaic, and others have probably been scraped and/or sold by the demo company for extra money. I’m not sure what went where or to who exactly. I am no longer involved with the State so my knowledge of the going-ons are very limited. It’s unfortunate that the pictures I took of the chandeliers don’t show the scale of them. They were huge and quite impressive.
Bob, thank you for posting the newspaper clippings. I especially love the “Old Montauk” picture. Thank you so much!!!!
The Passaic Bookstore….. sigh…. I would purchase all my Famous Monsters of Filmland magazines there… well, in the adjoining comic book store. To be honest with you, I’d rather live in Paterson or Newark over Passaic. The Art Deco skyscraper there is finally about to get a buyer and a tenant (medical purposes). I’m very scared to think of the alterations that might occur on that landmark, especially in that massive lobby. Time will tell. I’m only 31 years old so consider me a geek if you must, but I love these buildings…
I should also mention that the building was stripped of all its chandeliers, marble, stained glass, etc to be sold by the demo company… it’s a process which keeps their bids low if they can earn some money on the deal at the end. From what I understand, some of the fixtures were saved by Passaic to use in other buildings… perhaps the new school, if it ever gets built (see my entry above).
So, here is the deal with the Montauk… I pass it every day while I drive to work. The whole side is demolished (original entrance, projection room, balcony), if you know the area it’s in the region of the entrance to the Hotel Passaic. The Main Ave facade is still standing. as it the screen area of the theater. I plan on going to photograph what is left on Saturday to add to my photobucket album. I’m the guy that posted the interior pictures… see link above.
Now here is where it gets sad and I regret to inform everyone of this… there is no immediate plan to build a school on the site. The NJSDA owns the property and had a contract to demolish it already executed, that’s why the building is coming down. With all the crazy finances in the State of NJ, the project is on hold. There isn’t even a guarentee that a school will be built now on that site. Anyone who knows Passaic should think of where Beth Israel Hospital was… that whole site has been a vacant lot for years now… awaiting a school that might never be built.
Sorry to ramble, but like I said, every day I drive by the Montauk and see it disappearing more and more in the name of “progress”.
Sorry to anyone that has inquired about gaining access… I’m a “nobody” at my job. I have no power to get anyone in, let alone myself again. I’ve heard they are going to repurpose some of the interior details and use them in the new school. That is not confirmed, but at the very least it’s some part of the theater living on…
Just realized… the link above opens up the album on page 2. There are 3 pages all together. Here’s a better link….
I hope this link works… I finally got around to uploading these photos. I know it’s been a while, but better late than never. There are numerous photos throughout the theater, including backstage. Enjoy!
I just came back from the INTERIOR of the Montauk. It is truly awesome and such a shame that it will be torn down in the upcoming months. I have plenty of pictures…. they will soon follow.