The Pavilion Theater, the seven-screen art deco movie theater at Prospect Park West and 14th Street, will be converted into condos, the Real Deal reported today. According to a permit application filed with the Department of Buildings, Hidrock Realty, the Midtown-based developer that purchased the theater for $16 million in 2006, is planning to construct a 24-unit, six-story building with ground-floor retail space at the site.
There are conflicting reports as to whether the Pavilion will be demolished or converted. The permit application makes it sound like it’ll be the former; as the Real Deal writes, “The developer’s application with the city shows plans for a new six-story building that is slated to replace the 33,000-square-foot cinema.” The new construction is slated to be 54,000-square-feet, with 8,000 of that devoted to commercial space, and the rest to residential space.
But Ethan Geto, a Hidrock Realty spokesman, told DNAinfo that the firm has “no plans” to demolish the Pavilion, but instead wants to open a higher-quality arthouse in its place. Geto told DNAinfo:
They’re not going to maintain the current theater for a variety of reasons, but they’re hoping and expecting to provide a better theater. They are diligently working towards incorporating a new theater with a high quality operator that will be more in tune with the kind of fare that the community would appreciate.
That would be welcome since that area of Brooklyn is bereft of movie-going options. The Pavilion, bedbug-ridden hellhole* that it is, nevertheless is the only easily accessible movie house for South Slope, Kensington, and Windsor Terrace residents. Since it’s located in a historic district, development plans must also be approved by the Landmarks Preservation Commission. Hidrock plans to submit their proposal to the LPC in the next few months, and to begin construction by the end of the year.
*As commenter Denis Hurley points out, the theater closed temporarily in 2011 to attempt to eliminate the bedbug problem.