CCC To Restore Philly Theatre

Clear Channel Communications has purchased the historic Boyd Theater in downtown Philadelphia and will spend up to $35 million to restore it.

The 2,400-seat art deco movie house will host concerts, musicals, films and other events when it reopens in late 2006, CCC theatre head David Anderson said. The company aims to keep the theatre booked 240 days per year, he added.

The announcement pleased local preservationists, who had feared the building might be demolished. The theatre was built in 1928 but closed in 2002, when it was known as the Sameric. The Goldenberg Group, a developer that bought the property in 1998, said the theatre was losing money.

After an unsuccessful attempt to win government subsidies last year, the group sold the theatre to CCC for an undisclosed sum. The company will restore the ailing building without any federal or state funds, officials said.

Representatives of other Philadelphia venues expressed some apprehension about the sale and its potential impact on their businesses, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer. But Anderson told the paper the city is “underserved by theatres” and that the restored Boyd will stimulate business, not hinder it.