The developer planing to turn the former Paramount Theatre on Bernard Avenue into a craft beer market says his company will spend $100,000 just to refurbish the landmark sign on the front of the building.
Doug Porozni, president of Calgary-based Ronmor Developers, said Monday the sign—which the company vowed to keep when it first announced earlier this year that the 68-year-old theatre would be closed—will have to be re-stabilized as it is currently being help up by the floor of the former theatre not tothe outside wall to which it is attached. As part of the remodelling of the building, the existing floor will be removed and replaced with a new one.
The work on the sign is just part of a repurposing of the Paramount, which will also see a smaller space hived off at the east end of the building to become home to a new, as-of-yet unidentified, business. That portion of the building will include part of the existing theatre marquee on the front.
Inside remnants of the old theatre will be kept including the ornate ceiling and fire doors, as well as some of the theatre seats.
The craft beer market will include a 482-seat pub, with 204 of those seats in a new, open-air rooftop patio, that will operate during the spring, summer and fall.
Porozni said renovation work will take about six months and then the operator of the craft beer market will need about three more months to outfit the inside for its business, putting completion in the spring of 2017.
On Monday, Kelonwa city council approved the plans for the Paramount, which operated as a theatre from 1949 until last month.
Prior to the vote to approve the plans, Mayor Colin Basran lamented the loss of the city’s only downtown movie theatre, saying he hoped to see another theatre open downtown in future as it would be a public draw for the area.
But he said he was pleased to see the plans for the Paramount, praising the developer for keeping elements from the past as part of its plan for the future.
Basran said the news of the theatres’s closure and the move to repurpose the building “certainly touched a nerve” among residents but he predicted the public will be happy with what they see.