What does one do with an old, now landmarked, theater in Queens? That's the big question for the owners of Ridgewood Theatre—in January the facade was landmarked, but the interior can still be renovated—leaving a few options on their hands.
The owners are still seeking partners to help them get the space operational again; one of them, Tony Montalbano, told the Daily News, "We don't know which way we're going." He may be keeping mum, but one of the original ideas was to turn the 17,000-square-footer into a dual movie theater/retail space. A win-win situation, but it all comes down to who's writing the checks.
The Ridgewood Local Development Corporation's Paul Kerzner says it could also be turned into... condos. He noted, "There's no preconceived notion of what this could or couldn't be. Obviously one of its best uses is to fully restore it"—the Beaux-Arts designed theater was first opened on December 23rd,1916, and is the longest-running movie house in the nation—"but in today's economic climate, our timing may be off."