TDI -- Reporter's Blog

Apr. 9, 2012 at 9:40am

Tacoma's Big Screen Dream

I'm in the midst of some spring cleaning here at Tacoma Daily Index world headquarters. It's part of some changes that are afoot here at the newspaper (more details later). In going through some old boxes and drawers, I've been finding some interesting things that I plan to share here on the blog over the next couple weeks or so.

First up . . . plans for a downtown movie theater! You've probably heard that rumor before. Downtown is famous for its roster of developers with big ideas and empty pockets. But at one point (I'm guessing the mid-1990s based on the documents), a San Diego consultant was tapped to work on the "Downtown Tacoma Project" -- a plan to revitalize an area of Broadway that began about halfway down Antique Row. Here's the view looking north. That boxy building in the middle of the drawing? That's the Elk's Temple.

According to the literature:

"Through the adaptive reuse of numerous turn-of-the-century buildings, the Downtown Tacoma project creates a dynamic urban retail entertainment development. The project features an 80,000 square foot two-level state-of-the-art cinema, along with some of the nation's finest fashion and lifestyle retailers. Inviting restaurants and cafes complement the mix. Topping off the project will be 100 live/work lofts with spectacular views of Thea Foss Waterway. Downtown Tacoma provides a unique destination, and acts as a catalyst to additional developments in the Arts District."

That giant movie theater would have been located at 711 Broadway, which is currently nothing but a giant precipice overlooking a parking lot on Commerce Street.

comments [7]  |  posted under Downtown, Movie Theater, Tacoma


by KevinFreitas on 4/9/2012 @ 12:35pm
Wow, that's quite a vision! Sure would be nice to keep the graffiti garages but drop a theater over the top of that flat parking lot across from Old City Hall. Thanks for sharing! Look forward to more!

by Jesse on 4/9/2012 @ 12:52pm
I'd like to see a new style cinema on top of Park Place North. Chop off the top floor of PPN to make the Theatre on the Square Park level with the theatre's "front" entrance through Theatre on the Square. Build the new theatre OVER (air rights) Commerce and have Theatre on the Square park as the courtyard for the new cinema. Shops on Pacific Ave on Pacific Ave level, Theatre on Broadway Level with the Theatre on the Square a courtyard for the movie complex, maybe an entrance on 9th and Pacific. That's what I think.

by KevinFreitas on 4/9/2012 @ 1:20pm
Oh, that's a beautiful vision. Count me in @Jesse!

by Erik on 4/9/2012 @ 1:27pm
@Jesse: that would certianly be an improvement...

by fredo on 4/9/2012 @ 3:06pm
An intergenerational wet dream

1990-"Downtown Tacoma Project"
2012-"Tacoma Means Business"

by L.S.Erhardt on 4/9/2012 @ 5:22pm
Neat vision.

But I'm tired of cool ideas and visions.

by Non Sequitur on 4/10/2012 @ 11:56am
It's "interesting"


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