By Carol Tannenhauser
The Metro Theater on Broadway between 99th and 100th Streets, which has been closed for 17 years, is coming back as a “Community Entertainment Center,” with multiple “restaurant-theaters,” showing films and serving food and alcohol, and offering much more, West Side Rag learned from conversations with government officials and Albert Bialek, owner of the theater.
Bialek is not at liberty to reveal more details until Monday, when decisions about the official announcement will be made, he said, but he assured WSR that all the necessary approvals for the new center have been obtained.
More to come!
UPDATE: Monday, 3/21, 5 pm — WSR just spoke to Albert Bialek again. He reiterated that the Metro will be a “multi-screen cinema center, with restaurant facilities and meeting rooms available on a rental basis. And independent film showings.”
The mysterious principals — “renowned people” — from California will not reveal their identity until they “file their plans,” which they will do in one to three weeks.
A spokesperson for the Department of Buildings sent WSR the following email:
I read the story you published about the Old Metro Theater. I wanted to reach out to let you know that no work permits have been issued by DOB at 2626 Broadway in Manhattan, and to make sure you have the following information:
On 3/19/2022, DOB conducted an inspection of the site in response to a 311 complaint received on 3/15/2022 for reported interior construction work performed without a permit. During the time of the inspection, no active construction work was taking place at the site and no site safety concerns were observed by our inspectors.
DOB inspectors will be routed back to the scene to further investigate these reports of unpermitted construction work at the location.
Will this be another case of dashed hopes as has happened several times in the past? Remember the Alamo Drafthouse? Blink Fitness?
Time and the Rag will tell.
Correction: We originally reported that there will be “20 restaurant-theaters,” but have since learned that number is to be determined.