The Historic Lansdowne Theater Corporation (HLTC), a private non-profit corporation, was established in 2005 to purchase and restore The Lansdowne Theater as a place of public entertainment. The corporation received a significant grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development to purchase and stabilize the building and begin the process of restoring and reopening the theater.
This project provides a unique opportunity for economic and community development. Built in 1927, the theater has long been the centerpiece of Lansdowne’s Central Business District. It is recognized for its historic and architectural significance and is seen by many as the key to the reinvigoration of the borough’s main commercial area. The reopened theater will provide an easily accessed venue for the arts and education.
Since taking ownership of the theater in 2007, the HLTC has repaired the roof, reconnected the storm water drainage system, installed temporary lighting and a fire detection system, and removed obsolete mechanical equipment throughout the building. The corporation has worked with theater consultants to determine a financially viable reuse for the theater while maintained the architectural splendor of the building inside and out. Baseline architectural drawings have been completed and have played an important role in determining the future of this important building.
The most noticeable work on the building is in the ground floor retail spaces. Awnings that replicate the originals were installed on the building, and two exciting tenants now occupy these spaces. Cinema 16:9, an independent 41-seat micro-cinema and DVD rental service, occupies the space to the left of the marquee. Regency Café, a bake and coffee shop, occupies the space to the right of the marquee. Both of these businesses have quickly animated the building, bringing entertainment and great food back to The Lansdowne Theater.