Developer Save the Kings?

The city is once again shopping around for a developer to bring the dilapidated Loew’s Kings Theatre in Flatbush back to life, according to an article in the Post. Potential grand plans for the neglected building could extend further than simply getting the 63,000-square-foot structure in working condition again; the deal might include giving a developer air rights to build residential space, a boutique hotel and retail shops. The price tag for just restoring the theater is expected to cost a whopping $70 mil. The EDC has a video on its website (developer no like read?) about the building’s history that includes Marty Markowitz waxing poetic about how his first date was at the Wonder Theater. In all seriousness, though, it does seem high time for somebody to step up to the plate and hopefully broker a win-win: Brooklyn would get to see the revitalization of one its most magnificent structures, and a developer would get to make some cash off that work.
‘King’ of Rehabs? [NY Post]
Loews Kings Theater [EDC]
A Chance to Bring Back an Old Brooklyn Gem [Brownstoner] GMAP
Photo by marioletto.

0 Comment

  • I work in the concert promotion business and have to say nobody in this world would take it on (too much development, not enough vision, etc), but would book a ton of acts here.

    Where are the brooklyn comics and musicians? I always hear about ‘giving back’ – here’s a golden opportunity.

  • i lost my virginity in that place. ahh the memeories.

  • Not to be a big jerk, but just *who* would stay in a hotel in that area?

  • You might ask the question, who would stay in a hotel near Gowanus or on 4th Avenue?

    Not that it’s going to become a hipster bohemia anytime soon, but the area near the Kings is slowly gentrifying and people need places for their relatives to stay when they visit. Give it 10 years or so…

  • You have people with family that come to visit from all over the world. They would probably stay in a hotel near this theatre. The developer will receive government incentives so it could be used as a cultural arts center.

  • An air rights hotel over the theater probably makes the most economic sense. Guests at the hotel would help provide patronage to the theater and the preservation tax credits would help remove a big chunk of the restoration costs.

  • a hotel??? are you out of your minds? the cost to build over the existing theater will be exorbinant to begin with. add in the turd sandwich of having to restore that theater and you are looking at a real winner. and no, there are no tax credits available in this scenario – the whole purpose of historic tax credits is to incentivize developers to PRESERVE buildings, not to add things on top of them.

  • I live a few blocks away. hotel? I doubt that would really be profitable. But, an arts center similar to BAM on this side of the park is much needed. If only Gates of Buffet wanted to unload some of their excess right here-The community is full of life and it would be a shame to see that theater deteriorate even further.

  • I moved a year and a half ago right around the corner from this gorgeous theater and everytime I pass this theater I think, ‘what a great space for an arts center…’But seeing the condition of the stores and buildings surrounding it I get the sense that it would be futile. Why? Why has this area recessed so much? Hotel? Let’s start with a decent restaurant, a real one with tables and chairs. My real query is if this is the old stomping grounds of Barbara Streisand why isn’t she involved??? That would be giving back….

  • “Beware of cans bearing worms” – Schenectady tax payers.

    If the city mothers and fathers are shopping for ideas, why stop with the boutique hotel and and retail.

    How about a magnet school, disney style theme park, mega church, or a tall tower for a three state view.

  • Growing up in this area (and still living there) we used to have plenty of stores – there were discount stores, a Macy*s (where Staples, Old Navy, Stop and Shop [formerly Edwards], and Bally’s are), as well as family-run pizza shops, children’s stores, restaurants, etc. Flatbush used to be the “SPOT” back in the day. All of a sudden chain stores started popping up, the little stores would disappear- even more so now. Rents keep shooting up and a lot of people are feeling alienated. A lot of people worked EXTREMELY hard to make it here and now they’re being cast aside.
    As a child I always wished I would have the money to one day fix up that theatre- even before the demise of Kenmore (now known as Modell’s). Now, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a developer take it over and try to turn it into “luxury” condos for the sake of a quick buck.