A private Montessori school group is presenting its plans next week to alter the facade of a landmarked former movie theater at 292 Court Street in Cobble Hill. The school needs LPC approval to change the facade and “to install storefront infill, two barrier-free access ramps, a flag, a canopy, and an elevator bulkhead, “according to the LPC agenda. California-based LePort Schools signed a lease in April for the 15,700-square-foot building, which includes an additional 6,000 square feet of rooftop and back terrace space, as we reported at the time.
The school plans to open a preschool and kindergarten program in the space by September 2015, according to its website. The theater first opened in 1924 as the 600-seat Paras Court Theater, according to the Brooklyn Theatre Index. The three-story building featured a movie theater on the first floor and a dance hall and billiard room on the second, until the theater closed in 1959. The building was previously used as a daycare center, according to Yelp, and the facade appears to have been altered in the early ’60s.
Update: The manager of LePort’s Brooklyn programs tells us that the metal grating above the storefront will be removed and the masonry behind it restored. All the glass on the storefront and windows will be replaced, and the A/C units will be removed. They’re also hoping to “install a functional glass canopy over the storefront as an homage to the former cinema’s marquee.” All the metal finishes will be in bronze. The school will also install an ADA-compliant ramp, as required by the building code.
Photo by Nicholas Strini for PropertyShark