City leaders plan to gather today to brainstorm ways to protect the Bay Theatre from being closed or torn down.
The historic icon caught the community’s attention when a ‘For Sale’ banner was draped across it in 2008. The 64 year-old building and Main Street anchor was listed at $3.3 million by a heir to the theater’s long-time owner, Richard Loderhose shortly after he passed away.
Since then, scattered groups of history buffs have sought a means to protect the theater from being bought and torn down. However, there has not been a unified or well-funded effort to see it preserved.
At tonight’s Planning Commission meeting, city officials have invited the community to come forward with ideas for protecting the building. The commissioners will also explore ways that the city can help save the theatre including options such as designating the theater as a historic landmark, offering financial incentives or tax breaks to the owner, and zoning or easement adoptions aimed at preserving the landmark.
In the end, it’s a question of how far the city is willing to go to protect the historic building and whether its current and future owners see value in its historic status.
Tonight’s Planning Commission is at 7:30 p.m. at City Hall, 211 8th Street.
TELL US WHAT YOU THINK IN THE COMMENT BOX
Should the Bay Theatre be preserved? If so, what should be done to save it?