The future of the Vancouver Hollywood Theatre has been in question for the last few years. It was at one point going to be replaced with a fitness centre and although that application was rejected it has not been declared a heritage site. The Save the Hollywood Theatre Coalition is currently circulating a petition that has the site’s long-term future in mind rather than its momentary salvation.
The Coalition wants the theatre to survive as “a heritage-designated, non-profit arts and culture hub on the Broadway Corridor”. Since their last petition, the Coalition has submitted a document titled ‘Reinventing the Hollywood Theatre Renewal and Management Plan’ to city hall. It can be read in full here: www.savethehollywoodtheatre.files.wordpress.com/2014/06/reinventing-the-hollywood-rmp-v2-01.pdf
Negotiations are currently underway between the current owner and the Point Grey Community Church (PGCC), otherwise known as ‘The Church from the Hollywood’. The PGCC had leased the theatre for over a year before the proposal for the fitness centre came up, and had a record of allowing community use. This purchase would save the building from other purchases that would have it demolished, but it would not help the theatre become a recognized heritage site.
The Coalition is against this sale, a representative stating “We worry that the sale will go through and the Point Grey Church will make irreversible changes in the building and will not use it to its best potential for the whole community.“
They believe changes would be made to the interior, such as the removal of the projection room, which would run counter to protecting the site’s heritage. Also, the Coalition’s plan involves utilizing the theatre as an arts and entertainment site for the community as a whole. They would rather not see it bought by a private group.
This petition is specifically for a city-owned Hollywood Theatre, designate as a heritage site so its past is protected as it helps to nurture modern culture. To learn more about the Coalition and their plan you can visit them here: www.savethehollywoodtheatre.wordpress.com
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