SENATOR Theatre RFP: BDC Advisory Panel Requires Additional Meeting

The BDC Advisory Panel did meet yesterday, just a day after the public meeting, but apparently at least one more meeting will be necessary before their recommendation to the BDC board can be made.

While it is true that we (FoTS) have a member representing us on the panel, Laura Perkins, confidentiality rules have restricted what she can tell even us!

What she could say is that:

  • No decision could be made as to which of the 4 proposal plans the panel should be recommend to the BDC
  • At least one more meeting will be needed. The date is not yet known.
  • Questions, comments & opinions can, therefore, still be submitted, but should be done ASAP

So, keep using the list of Advisory Panel members we posted yesterday to keep your communications flowing to the people that best represent your feelings, community, etc.!

We favor the WTMD/Towson University plan. It includes the community-based, multipurpose arts, education & entertainment programming and non-profit ownership we’ve been advocating for over a year now. That said, we’d feel more comfortable if they could say they have historic theatre experts at the ready to assist with their planned “historically sensitive renovations”.

The plan presented by the Cuzacks (known for The Charles Theatre) is closest to what The Senator was and we wish it could always be, but we believe trying to keep it as a 1st run movie house (you heard right, they do not plan to make The Senator another “art film” house)  is no longer a viable business model for the last historic single-screen theatre in Baltimore. And, adding a couple of eateries, we don’t believe, can make up for that or regain droves of customers (There are plenty of great eateries within yards of The Senator already).

The record of successful, surviving historic theatres in the US shows the best model (if not backed by a major theatre chain) is like that presented by WTMD/TU.

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