Bad news for film fans in Manhattan who were looking forward to the opening of a branch of Texas-based theater chain Alamo Drafthouse on the Upper West Side. The company, known for its "dinner and a movie" feature and its no texting policy, announced today on its blog that it has scrapped plans for the theater. The blog post stated:
An often-stated priority for the Alamo Drafthouse has been to open a venue in New York City. While that still stands true, the reality of the upper west side Metro is that too much has changed since we initially began work on the location. Construction costs have risen tremendously since engaging in the project back in early 2012 (due in some measure to ongoing Hurricane Sandy reconstruction efforts) and ultimately the location is no longer financially viable for us. We would love to make the upper west side location our next neighborhood theater in New York, but we cannot see this particular location as sustainable under current conditions.
In April 2012, Alamo announced it would take over the former Metro Theater on Manhattan's Upper West Side to create a five screen theater. Last month, the Alamo Drafthouse opened a theater in Yonkers, just north of New York City. Distraught fans are tweeting about the news. @AlamoNYC responded "We're sad about it too! For now we still have Yonkers, and Brooklyn in the future." Construction on an Alamo Drafthouse in Brooklyn is already underway.
In the meantime, a Drafthouse rep confirmed for Indiewire that the Metro will go back on the real estate market. New York programmer Cristina Cacioppo, formerly of the 92YTribeca, was recently hired as the head programmer for the New York location; she has accepted a position as creative manager for the Yonkers location and will continue working with the Alamo programming team from Brooklyn.