Metro Theater to be Turned into Retail

Art deco building shuttered since 2006 to attract UWS businesses

29 Jun 2020 | 10:34

A famous movie theater that was built during the Great Depression will soon be transformed into retail.

In June, a developer filed plans to renovate the Metro Movie Theater, 2626 Broadway, which has been shuttered since 2006.

The theater originally called the Midtown Theater, opened in 1933 and in 1989 was named a landmark by the Landmark Preservation Commission. At that time it was one of the rare art deco style neighborhood movie theaters and one of the only pre-WWII theaters that lined the UWS.

“It will not just be another building, it will be something very special to the UWS,” said owner Albert Bialek.

Bialek told the West Side Spirit he could not reveal the specifics of his plans yet, but said big things are coming. On June 5, plans were filed to begin work on the ceiling, mezzanine, roof and the first two floors.

Bialek said he has already spoken with numerous businesses that are eager to come to the old theater. He stressed no demolition will take place and the plans are dependent on the LPC and Department of Buildings.

According to Bialek, the LPC likes what he is doing with the building and construction is expected to last eight to nine months.

“We are sensitive to the history of the building,” he said.

“It will not just be another building, it will be something very special to the UWS.” Owner Albert Bialek