To address the long list of community concerns, Another Planet Entertainment modified the renovation proposal of Castro Theater floor seats.
Berkeley production company, The company, which took over control of the historic San Francisco venue last year, scrapped earlier plans to demolish the fixed orchestral level seating. , announced a new program that includes a motorized tilting floor that allows for flexible seating plans for different events.
David Perry, spokesperson for Another Planet Entertainment, told Chronicle before the Castro Theater Union community meeting at the Most Holy Redeemer Church. We presented a solution that seemed to be a win-win.”
The proposal calls for motorized floors to replace 800 existing house seats installed in 2001, allowing for both rake seats and tiered standing. According to Another Planet, it will improve line of sight and create a more accessible layout.
The new plans will be formally presented on Wednesday, February 1, at a hearing by the Historic Preservation Commission to discuss proposed renovations to the Castro Theater.
“Not only is this the best, it’s the only way to keep Castro open,” Perry said.
Exclusive: New Castro Theater Conservancy Group wants to scrap plans to refurbish SF venue
Thursday night at a community meeting hosted by the Castro Theater ConservancyFormed in June to thwart plans to renovate Another Planet. “Save your seat” campaign.
“Some people, just hearing the slogan, think our goal is really just to keep our current seats, but the slogan actually implies greater value and hope for theaters. “The true underpinning of this slogan is that the Castro Theater, as a historic space, is a queer It recognizes its importance as a unique location for the development and culture of the community.”
The seat is one of many improvements in the promotion company. CAW Architects — the Palo Alto firm that modernized Stanford University’s Frost Amphitheater and UC Berkeley’s Hurst Greek Theater — He said the 100-year-old building at 429 Castro St. needed to be converted into a live event space.
Other proposed changes include removing the lobby concession area and installing mobile concession stands behind the auditorium and in the mezzanine lobby. Changes invisible to patrons include the addition of dressing rooms, acoustic upgrades, and a new ventilation system. Upgrades to the Americans with Disabilities Act are also underway, including adding ramps and accommodations for wheelchair accessible seating.
Inside a tense community meeting at the Castro Theater about the future of historic sci-fi theater
Backed by film icons George Lucas and Martin Scorsese, the Conservancy provided speaking points for City Hall attendees and encouraged them to attend the upcoming Historic Preservation Commission meeting. bottom. Theater interior features.
Seats are not currently part of the building’s landmark designation from the city.
“Imagine something like Mission Dolores without the pews, or the City Lights bookstore without the shelves,” says Castro Theater, long considered one of the Bay Area’s most important film and LGBTQ spaces. Historian and preservationist Christine Madrid French said: “We have to save this building because it’s the inside of the structure that makes it a home or a theater. It’s a jewel in Castro’s crown. You’re the queen of the neighborhood.”
Here’s how the Castro Theater will change, according to a renovation plan filed with SF
Previously, Another Planet transformed the 100-year-old Cinematic Palace designed by architect Timothy Flueger into a venue similar to other venues such as Oakland’s Fox Theater and San Francisco’s Bill Graham Civic Auditorium. plans have been met with opposition. .
But ambitious plans like this are nothing new to Another Planet. Another Planet revived the Graham Auditorium in 2010 and the Fox Theater in 2008 when the city was due to close its music venues. Part of a $72 million renovation after being vacant for 42 years. Both venues currently do not have floor seating, but folding chairs are provided during certain events such as comedy shows.
According to the company, the proposed Castro plan is a technologically advanced solution for both music and movie fans.
“We fully support the changes proposed by APE, which will allow the theater to have diversified programming and an upgraded seating configuration. If its fate can be stopped, it could evolve into another occupancy or be changed to another occupancy.Steve Nasser and Elaine Nasser Padian, owners of Bay Properties Inc.’s Castro Theater, said: In a statement it said:
But Conversancy isn’t convinced it’s the only option.promoted by the group Preserve and maintain the Auditorium of the Castro Theater intact, inside and out, in hopes of persuading Another Planet and the Nasser family to make it a non-profit public facility.
“These are the same plans they tried to sell a year ago,” said Steven Torres, executive co-chair of the Castro LGBTQ Cultural District. What they changed is the adjective they used to describe them. ”