Loew’s Pitkin To Be Converted to School, Retail

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After closing more than four decades ago, the Loew’s Pitkin Theatre is about to get a new lease on life. The historic Brownsville property is being transformed by Poko Partners, LLC into a K-8 charter school that will be managed by Ascend Learning; the ground floor will be activated as retail space. According to the developer, the renovation will be “historically sensitive and eco-friendly.” The groundbreaking is set to take place next Tuesday. GMAP
Photo from Bridge & Tunnel Club

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  • Sad..

    Got a look into this beauty about 15 years ago.

    While it is good to see development on Pitkin Avenue…this will end up just like the Bushwick. A faded remnant of another era that never drew the interest of those able(but apparently unwilling) to step up to the plate that is carved up such that it will never be of use to the general public again.

    A step better than the now torn down Palace theaater around the corner.

    That being said… the owners wanted some crazy 2.5 million 15 years ago. And since I wasn’t hanging out in that hood at night – EVER – my words are worth the paper they are written on. It is an interesting math exercise to estimate the wealth of those who left Brooklyn to greater futures as opposed to the cost of fixing up a dozen or so of these around the borough. Chump change if Brooklyn actually still meant anything to them other than street cred.

  • Wow, that’s amazing. I’ve stopped and walked around this place, it’s totally beautiful. Not one of the original Wonder Palaces, but damn close. Sat 2800, from Brownsville’s era as a Jewish enclave. Extraordinary Moorish-style terra cotta and limestone, right down to the arched poster display window that looks straight of Arabian Nights. The place is a shell, nothing left but the gorgeous facades, and will cost a fortune to restore. From the hill above you can see that the roof has a hole in it you could drive a bus through. I think a school is a great use (tho it doesn’t have many windows, I wonder how they’ll deal with that.)I was worried when I noticed the development sign on it would be a teardown. A bit of info here: http://cinematreasures.org/theater/3887/ , and some more here:

    http://www.museumoffamilyhistory.com/lia-mem-brownsville-schildt-loewspitkin.htm

    “The dramatic Loew’s Pitkin Theater on Pitkin Avenue between Legion Street and Saratoga Avenue, backed by East New York Avenue, was born on Saturday, November 23, 1929 precisely 11 A.M. Its seating capacity of 2,827 people included a big auditorium below, a sizeable upstairs balcony section and several loges.

    Designed by Thomas W. Lamb, it was one of the Loew’s theater chain’s highly touted atmospheric theaters, with a cloudy, starry sky and romantic lighting effects. There was a carpeted grand staircase in the lobby, with richly carved lion’s head details. Even the restrooms were elegantly decorated with their own entrance lounge areas. The first movie at Loew’s Pitkin was the talking-singing feature “So This Is College” (MGM) with Elliott Nugent, Robert Montgomery and Sally Starr. There was a stage revue as well, featuring performers direct from New York’s Capitol Theater, comedians and comic acts, magicians, acrobats, musical artists and famed acts like Buck and Bubbles. This combo pattern continued for years and even when it was no longer the norm, there were occasional live vaudeville shows along with the films. At opening, it offered four De Luxe shows daily at 1:30-3:45-7:00-9:00. It was heralded as LOEW’S AMAZING NEW! PITKIN on Sat. Nov. 9, 1929 at 11 A.M.. Opening Day prices were 11 a.m.-1 p.m. .35 cents, 1-5 p.m. .50 cents, 5 p.m. to closing .75 cents. Note (Loges slightly higher.)”

  • great for that area, inside totally devastated from pics i have seen, nothing really left, water, fire, scavengers

  • A mixed blessing indeed. I wish they could have restored it to its former glory, but, like the other posters, all evidence I’ve seen strongly suggests that this place is no longer feasible as a movie theater. Hence, the current proposition, the only one I’ve heard of during recent times, is most welcome.